MADISON, WI (October 14, 2020) — As one of the leading research universities in the world, UW–Madison is naturally an integral part of the fight against COVID-19. But in addition to research, the UW is also a key figure in the campaign to inform people about how to protect themselves and their communities. There are massive amounts of information about COVID-19 pouring into the popular consciousness every day — and not all of it is reliable or useful. What social effects are we seeing as a result of this “infodemic”? How can the average person tell the difference between good and bad information? After more than nine months of intensive research, what do scientists know for sure about this disease?

A special edition of The UW Now Livestream will celebrate the beginning of this year’s Wisconsin Science Festival with a discussion and Q & A with two scientists who are working to stop COVID-19 — and the misinformation surrounding it. The talk will be moderated by Mike Knetter, president and CEO of the Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association.


William Hartman, MD, is an assistant professor of anesthesiology at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health as well as the medical director of the UW Health Preanesthesia Assessment Clinic. He is also the principal investigator for the UW’s COVID-19 convalescent plasma program. His current research focuses on implementation of therapy trial protocols to quickly and safely bring novel treatments from the laboratory to the patient. He is working on three ongoing trials with the Regeneron COVID-19 monoclonal antibody cocktail to be used in infected patients and noninfected household contacts as a method to prevent the development of the disease.

Dietram Scheufele is the Taylor-Bascom Chair in Science Communication, a Vilas Distinguished Achievement Professor, and director of academic programs in the Department of Life Sciences Communication. His research examines the formation of public attitudes and policy dynamics surrounding emerging science. He is an elected member of the German National Academy of Science and Engineering; a lifetime associate of the National Research Council; a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science; and a fellow of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters. He is a recipient of the University of Wisconsin–Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Spitzer Excellence in Teaching Award.


When: Thursday, Oct. 15, at 7 p.m. CDT


Where: The UW Now Livestream:

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