One of the first people I ever got to know in skepticism was Steven Novella.
He was a professor at Yale, just starting out as an organized skeptic—I was a student, just getting fired up about the same stuff.
Since then, Steve has become hugely successful as a skeptic leader and as a communicator of skeptical ideas, particularly when it comes to his area of specialty, alternative medicine.
And one thing I’ve always noticed about him over the years is his unending capacity to consider what really works to promote skepticism and critical thinking, and what doesn’t—and to adjust accordingly.
So I asked Steve on the show to discuss this process, and to talk about grappling with one of the toughest issues in skepticism and the issue that is his personal specialty—dealing with false claims about medical cures, or what is sometimes called complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).
Steven Novella is a neurologist at the Yale University School of Medicine. He’s also the host of the podcast Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe, and the president and co-founder of the New England Skeptics’ Society. He writes the blog Neurologica, and contributes to a number of other blogs including Science-Based Medicine.