The War on Science
The War on Science (back cover)

The War On Science

Who's Waging It, Why It Matters, What We Can Do About It
“A must-read.” —GUARDIAN
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“Wherever the people are well informed,” Thomas Jefferson wrote, “they can be trusted with their own government.” But what happens when they are not? In every issue of modern society—from climate change to vaccinations, transportation to technology, health care to defense—we are in the midst of an unprecedented expansion of scientific progress and a simultaneous expansion of danger.

At the very time we need them most, scientists and the idea of objective knowledge are being bombarded by a vast, well-funded, three-part war on science. The result is an unprecedented erosion of thought in Western democracies as voters, policymakers, and justices actively ignore the evidence from science, leaving major policy decisions to be based on the demands of the most strident voices.

Shawn Otto’s provocative book investigates the historical, social, philosophical, political, and emotional reasons for why and how evidence-based politics are in decline and authoritarian politics are once again on the rise, and offers a vision, an argument, and compelling solutions to bring us to our collective senses, before it’s too late.

Publish Date
6 × 9 × 1.06 in
25 oz

Shawn Otto

Shawn Otto is an award-winning science advocate, author, and educator. He is the author of The War On Science: Who’s Waging It, Why It Matters, What We Can Do About It and the cofounder of His novel, Sins of Our Fathers, was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and his film House of Sand and Fog was nominated for three Academy Awards.

Praise and Prizes

  • “Every so often a book comes along that changes the way you view the world. The War on Science is one of those rare books. If you care about attacks on climate science and the rise of authoritarianism, if you care about biased media coverage or shake-your-head political tomfoolery, this book is for you.”

    The Guardian
  • “We’re seeing right now a titanic battle between the power of science and the power of money—and money is winning. The War on Science explains why, and offers some pointers that might get us back on the right track.”

    Bill McKibben
  • “Shawn Otto makes a case that can’t be refuted. Science is important to all of us, especially in a democracy. He backs it up with peer-reviewed studies, carefully researched numbers, and his own extensive experience. He uses the process of science to prove that we need science in order to remain free. Here’s hoping voters everywhere take him seriously—soon.”

    Bill Nye
  • “Science is not a body of facts, but rather a structured approach to uncovering the fundamental laws that govern the natural world. As The War on Science shows, policymakers who choose to ignore those fundamental laws imperil us all, for the laws of nature will always trump the laws of man.”

    Marcia McNutt
    president of the US National Academy of Sciences
  • “One of the most important books published in the last decade.”

    Don Shelby
    Peabody Award–winning news anchor
  • “Policymakers and voters everywhere would do well to read The War on Science.”

    Vice President Walter Mondale