Science on trial?

BBC report on Italy scientists on trial over L’Aquila earthquake. Alfredo Biondi the lawyer of Mr Eva, Alfredo Biondi, said the trial was not credible, “This is a trial which opens on very shaky foundations. You cannot put science on trial.

Surely this is exactly wrong, if something can’t be tested/trialled then how can it be science?

Most importantly it isn’t science which is on trial but some scientists.

Who is on trial?

  • Franco Barberi, head of Serious Risks Commission
  • Enzo Boschi, former president of the National Institute of Geophysics
  • Giulio Selvaggi, director of the National Earthquake Centre
  • Gian Michele Calvi, director of European Centre for Earthquake Engineering
  • Claudio Eva, physicist
  • Mauro Dolce, director of the the Civil Protection Agency’s earthquake risk office
  • Bernardo De Bernardinis, former vice-president of the Civil Protection Agency’s technical department

It is alleged that statements made by an advisory committee, that small quakes are not necessarily a precursor to a large quake, resulted in people failing to take precautionary action of staying outside, and lead to 309 deaths.

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