All posts by Jens Degett

Jens Degett is a Danish freelance science journalist and Chair of the Danish Science Journalists Association since 2012. He has worked with science journalism and communication for more than 20 years. He has contributed to Danish popular science magazine, and specialist publications including Magisterbladet, Universitetsavisen, Weekendavisen as well as to Danish Broadcaster P1 and to radio programmes.

Hans Wigzell: let the researchers free from bureaucrats

Changing the environment in which scientists evolve requires considerable cultural changes. In this exclusive interview, EuroScientist talks to Hans Wigzell, one of the most influential scientists in Europe and former president of the Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. Although he recognises the necessity of bureaucrats in research institutions, he denounces their intervention as micromanagers of research. He also shares his views on what is required to, literally, let scientists free from bureaucrats. The solution he advocates involves strong leadership in research to remove the need for bureaucratic rules. Read more [...]

One step too far for legendary Danish transparency

Imagine that all the information including the health data, the intimate personal problems, the social references together with the results of your blood tests and all prescribed medicines in the past seven years have been sent to a database and stored under your unique personal identity number. This is what happened in Denmark. It is the result of a mandatory programme ordered by the Danish regional health authorities. When people realised that such data had been used for research without the consent of individuals, it created a massive scandal in a country known for its transparency policies. This unfortunate episode is a good illustration of how things can go wrong when data privacy issues are not being fully taken into account. Can other European countries learn from the Danish experience? Read more [...]

Science Communication: putting the cart before the horse

A Danish research project on the so-called Nordic diet has raised concern about new trends in the way science is being communicated to the wider public, through untimely PR campaigns. The example of the OPUS Research Centre at University of Copenhagen, Denmark, stands out. This centre aims to investigate whether public health is likely to improve in Denmark, by renewing the Danish culinary culture. The trouble is that it started its promotional activities before any research findings had been published. Read more [...]