A third of Russians do not know that the Earth revolves around the Sun

The All-Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VTsIOM) found in a new study that every third Russian is convinced that the Sun revolves around the Earth (35%), and not vice versa. The correct answer was given by 61% of the respondents.

For 15 years, the indicator of those who believe in the rotation of the Sun around the Earth has grown by 7 p.p. At the same time, only 12% agreed that the Earth makes a revolution around the Sun in one month.

VTsIOM also checked a number of other misconceptions that people often believe in:

  • With the statement that radioactive milk can be made safe if it is boiled, 7% of respondents agreed. The majority of respondents (85%) gave the correct answer that boiling would not help.
  • One in five (21%) believe that the first humans lived at the same time as the dinosaurs. And only 66% of the respondents said that this is not so.
  • And when asked whether GMO foods cause cancer, 44% of respondents answered positively. Negative – 35%. Another 21% of respondents found it difficult to answer.
  • A third of those surveyed (32%) agreed with the opinion that such products can end hunger on the planet. More than half of the respondents (55%) answered in the negative.

Based on the results of the responses, VTsIOM identified three groups of people according to the level of scientific literacy: 21% had a low level, 44% had an average level, and 35% had a high level.

The group with a high level of scientific literacy is dominated by young people (61%). Almost half (49%) of people from this group are active Internet users, 45% have higher education, more than half (51%) live in Moscow or St. Petersburg, as well as in the North-Western Federal District (45%).

This survey was conducted on July 9, 2022 among 1,600 Russians aged 18 and over. The data are weighted by socio-demographic parameters. The marginal error with a probability of 95% does not exceed 2.5%.

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