'Look to the science' was the call from politicians and the public alike throughout the pandemic. As if science has a single definitive view, and the data one interpretation. Yet science is full of competing and sometimes contradictory views particularly at the edge of current understanding. And increasingly scientists see themselves as operating with models of reality. Ultimate final accounts being perhaps more typical of religion than the exploratory and sceptical approach at the core of science.

Should we abandon the idea that science provides absolute answers? Should scientists and politicians avoid giving the impression that there is a single definitive account? Or do we need to cut through the complexity of competing outlooks and commit to a truth in order to drive action and change?

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