A global “State of Science Survey,” published Monday by 3M international group, found that trust in science and scientists in general is currently the highest among Chinese.
About 97 percent of respondents in China said they believe in science, compared to 90 percent globally. According to 3M’s 2022 State of Science Index, 92 percent of respondents said they wanted to hear more scientists about their work (versus 83 percent globally).
The survey, conducted between September and December last year, included 1,000 adults in 17 countries including Australia, Brazil, France, India and the United States on everything from public perceptions of science to science concepts, education and employment opportunities.
“Science and scientists are very much held in China, even in the post-epidemic era, and this bodes well for the future,” said Jack Xiong, director of research and development at 3M China. “More than 90 percent of Chinese citizens believe that the future will require them to rely on science more than ever, and they are excited about future innovations, including artificial intelligence and mobility.”
The majority of respondents in China believe that if people do not appreciate science, there will be negative consequences for society (92 percent versus 83 percent globally). If people don’t trust news about science, the consequences can be dire—such as public health crises, increasing divisions within society, and exacerbating climate change.
At the same time, nearly all Chinese respondents believe that there are barriers to students pursuing STEM education (93 percent versus 84 percent globally). “MINT” stands for mathematics, computer science (or engineering), natural sciences, and technology.
About 94 percent of Chinese respondents believe that the world of work needs more skilled workers. The majority of them believe that vocational or trade schools can provide them with the education they need for a successful career.
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