Next Article in Journal
An AI-Enabled Framework for Real-Time Generation of News Articles Based on Big EO Data for Disaster Reporting
Next Article in Special Issue
Machine Learning in Detecting COVID-19 Misinformation on Twitter
Previous Article in Journal
6G Opportunities Arising from Internet of Things Use Cases: A Review Paper
Previous Article in Special Issue
Text Analysis Methods for Misinformation–Related Research on Finnish Language Twitter

Socioeconomic Correlates of Anti-Science Attitudes in the US

USC Information Sciences Institute, Marina del Rey, CA 90292, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Jari Jussila
Future Internet 2021, 13(6), 160;
Received: 24 May 2021 / Revised: 15 June 2021 / Accepted: 16 June 2021 / Published: 19 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Digital and Social Media in the Disinformation Age)
Successful responses to societal challenges require sustained behavioral change. However, as responses to the COVID-19 pandemic in the US showed, political partisanship and mistrust of science can reduce public willingness to adopt recommended behaviors such as wearing a mask or receiving a vaccination. To better understand this phenomenon, we explored attitudes toward science using social media posts (tweets) that were linked to counties in the US through their locations. The data allowed us to study how attitudes towards science relate to the socioeconomic characteristics of communities in places from which people tweet. Our analysis revealed three types of communities with distinct behaviors: those in large metro centers, smaller urban places, and rural areas. While partisanship and race are strongly associated with the share of anti-science users across all communities, income was negatively and positively associated with anti-science attitudes in suburban and rural areas, respectively. We observed that emotions in tweets, specifically negative high arousal emotions, are expressed among suburban and rural communities by many anti-science users, but not in communities in large urban places. These trends were not apparent when pooled across all counties. In addition, we found that anti-science attitudes expressed five years earlier were significantly associated with lower COVID-19 vaccination rates. Our analysis demonstrates the feasibility of using spatially resolved social media data to monitor public attitudes on issues of social importance. View Full-Text
Keywords: social media; COVID-19; anti-science; demographics social media; COVID-19; anti-science; demographics
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Hu, M.; Rao, A.; Kejriwal, M.; Lerman, K. Socioeconomic Correlates of Anti-Science Attitudes in the US. Future Internet 2021, 13, 160.

AMA Style

Hu M, Rao A, Kejriwal M, Lerman K. Socioeconomic Correlates of Anti-Science Attitudes in the US. Future Internet. 2021; 13(6):160.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Hu, Minda, Ashwin Rao, Mayank Kejriwal, and Kristina Lerman. 2021. "Socioeconomic Correlates of Anti-Science Attitudes in the US" Future Internet 13, no. 6: 160.

Find Other Styles
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

Back to TopTop