Our new weekly newsletter, “Simply Science”, showcases the best of The Economist’s scientific journalism. From vaccine manufacturing to the hunt for ET, from genomics to the microbiome, from the origins of land animals to the relationship between daughters and divorce, our science coverage combines deep knowledge and accessible writing.
Written by Alok Jha, our science correspondent, “Simply Science” is published each Wednesday and is free to receive. The newsletter features exclusive commentary; picks out the best of our recent coverage; highlights a striking scientific image of the week; and gives recommendations for further reading.
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For a long time, the hunt for aliens was a fringe activity in science. The few astronomers who did work in the field, such as Carl Sagan, a celebrated American astronomer who died in 1996, could only do so because they had already built up their reputations in what were considered more serious areas of science. Still, they had to brave what Sagan called the “giggle factor”—ridicule by their peers. NASA, America’s space agency, largely kept the research at arm’s length. It may have been that they were worried about accusations of wasting time and money looking for “little green men”.
“Simply Science” is one of a number of newsletters produced by The Economist, including “The Climate Issue”, which focuses on environmental matters; “Checks and Balance”, our weekly analysis of US politics; and “Off the Charts”, a deep dive into our data journalism. You can also sign up for “The Economist This Week”, which has a special round-up of our covid-19 coverage, and “The Economist Today”, our daily selection of our best writing.