by Tom Chivers
Recently, I was lucky enough to win the ‘Explaining the facts’ category in the Royal Statistical Society’s Statistical Excellence in Journalism awards. In my brief acceptance speech, I used a quote I half-remembered. I don’t know who said it, but it goes something like this: if you want to fool people, the easiest way to do it is to never teach them what a denominator is. As a journalist, one who’s interested in science and facts and numbers, I think it is something to remember at all times. Continue reading
Amy Sippitt is Full Fact‘s research and impact manager. She runs a team of fact-checkers, and promotes high-quality research into the impact of fact-checking and the misinformation ecosystem.
The Need to Know project was launched in February to anticipate and plan for what information is needed for upcoming public decisions. Here Amy — who co-ordinates the project — explains more about what the project hopes to achieve.
Experts can and do work together to call out spurious factual claims and argument. But they also play a big role in laying the groundwork for debate. This starts with attempting to predict the big debates that will be happening in five years’ time, and producing information to inform these debates before things get too heated for the information to be heard.
This is exactly what the Need to Know project is about — a joint project between Full Fact, the Economic and Social Research Council, the UK Statistics Authority, and the House of Commons Library. Continue reading