We are excited to announce our next event with Dr Jedidiah Carlson, who will be exploring an incredibly important example of unintentional wider impacts of research:
the co-option and racist appropriation of genetics research.

The event is open to everyone so please do sign up & share amongst your colleagues
Poster for upcoming event. Image includes event details (repeated in the email) and photograph of the speaker.

Event Details:
'Combatting the Weaponization of Science by Right-Wing Extremists'
Wednesday 29th June 2022
3pm-4pm BST
Online event


Event Description:
In the last 10 years, there has been a surge in the popularity of far-right White supremacist communities throughout Europe and the US. Though these communities are loosely connected and vary widely on many fundamental ideological issues, one of their most consistently shared beliefs is that contemporary genetics research supports the existence of "biological races" and that differences in cognitive and behavioral traits between races are determined primarily by intrinsic, immutable genetic differences between such groups. These beliefs, in turn, are used to justify discrimination, hate speech, and racial violence. In this talk, I will outline the historical and contemporary modes by which genetics research is used as an ideological weapon by the far right, through the lens of my own empirical research in which I quantify this phenomenon of extremist co-option and enthusiasm for scientific papers on social media. I argue that scientists bear a responsibility to not only distance themselves from unscientific co-option, but are obligated to actively participate in rejecting and dismantling systems that perpetuate racism. I conclude with a discussion of various ways in which scientists might actively combat the weaponization of their work.

Speaker Bio:
Jedidiah Carlson, PhD, is a population geneticist and metaresearcher based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, where he currently works as a bioinformatics scientist for TwinStrand Biosciences. He completed his graduate studies in biostatistics and bioinformatics at the University of Michigan, and his postdoctoral training in the Department of Genome Sciences at the University of Washington. Dr. Carlson has had a long-standing interest in how research from his field (and science as a whole) gets applied, co-opted, and manipulated by far-right extremist communities. Dr. Carlson has supplemented his basic research with empirical metaresearch that explores how these communities are exposed to and engaging with scientific research on social media. He has been a leading voice on the topic, and his work has been covered in The Atlantic, Science, BBC, La Monde, and The Scientist.

For more details or any questions please email
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