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Science sells more newspapers

For three years, researchers at the University of Poitiers, in France, examined 20 newspaper from eight European countries and they observed that the sales of these newspapers rose on days when their weekly supplements on Science and Technology were published. Among the publications surveyed were the French newspaper Le Monde and the Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia, with an international circulation. According to professor Pierre Fayard, of the Communication and New Technology Institute of the University of Poitiers and the coordinator of the study, the sales increase of the Spanish newspaper was 10 % on the day when the science supplement was published. In the case of Le Monde’s science supplement, the researchers observed that it was read by 30% of the newspaper’s normal reading public, a percentage almost as high as the 33% of readers of the daily economic section. According to Fayard, who presented the conclusions of the study to the 6th Brazilian Scientific Journalism Congress (CBJC), held in May in Florianópolis, the results can be explained, on the one hand, by the very nature of the weekly supplements, which in addition to being of high quality, cover subjects connected with people’s day-to-day lives.