Australians back science for positive outcomes
The latest 3M State of Science Index has been released to launch National Science Week 2023, with data from the study indicating very strong levels of public support for science in Australia. Nine in 10 Australians want more people and businesses to stand up for and defend science, and think scientists are crucial to solving Australia’s biggest future challenges.
Ninety-three per cent of Australians believe positive outcomes can be achieved if more people stand up and defend science while 92% want to see businesses take action to defend science.
The theme for this year’s National Science Week schools program is ‘Innovation: powering future industries’.
The 3M State of Science Index measures public attitudes to science in 17 countries. More than 1000 Australians were surveyed for the poll, conducted by Ipsos.
Misha Schubert, Science & Technology Australia CEO, said Australians believe science is important to lives, safety, economy and complex problem solving, especially following recent climate disasters in the country. Australians back scientists to come up with climate solutions.
Eleni Sideridis, 3M Australia and New Zealand Managing Director, said the survey shows Australians have deep respect and trust in science.
“With Australians (94%) recognising the need for more skilled trade workers and a broad recognition that there will be negative outcomes if we cannot find a solution to the skills shortage, it is a vital time for all of us to encourage more school leavers into a science-based career.
“It’s positive to see that Australians recognise the importance to grow the participation rate of STEM education, with 4 in 5 (82%) agreeing that more needs to be done to encourage and keep students from underrepresented groups engaged in STEM education. This is in line with 3M’s global goal to create 5 million STEM and skilled trades learning experiences by 2025,” Sideridis said.
National Science Week will run nationwide from 12 to 20 August 2023. For more information about events, visit https://www.scienceweek.net.au/. More information about 3M State of Science Index and the findings from across the globe can be found here.
Key Australian survey findings of the 2023 3M State of Science Index include:
- 93% of Australians believe positive outcomes can be achieved if people stand up for and defend science. 92% want business to take action to defend science.
- 92% of Australians say STEM professionals can help us solve the problems of tomorrow.
- 88% of Australians clearly see the connection between science and its role in improving their life.
- Australians believe innovation can address the future impact of climate change. Top technologies Australians believe can address future climate change impacts include innovative uses of resources to reduce waste (52%), followed by affordable solar panels (48%), planet-friendly alternatives to traditional construction supplies (44%), affordable electric vehicles and transportation (43%), natural disaster-resilient building materials (39%) and air pollution filtration technology (39%).
- 82% of Australians believe the world is better prepared for the next global health pandemic because of science.
- 94% believe the workforce needs more skilled trade workers, and urgently… as 94% see consequences if Australia can’t solve this shortage.
- 90% believe companies should do more to make it easier for consumers to be more sustainable.
- 81% think underrepresented groups are a source of untapped potential in the STEM workforce.
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