UFOs reported by nearly a fifth of academics: ‘Cautiously willing to engage in more research’
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A new survey indicates that UFOs have been reported by almost a fifth of academics.
Among the 1,460 academics who were surveyed, 19% of respondents said they or someone they knew had witnessed an unidentified aerial phenomenon (UAP) — an observation in the sky that cannot be explained.
The findings reveal that some of the “brightest minds are interested in uncovering the mysteries of our skies,” with 37% saying they have a degree of interest in conducting research into UAP, as SWNS, the British news agency, reported of the survey.
The survey was taken by 1,460 academics from 133 U.S. universities across 14 academic disciplines in 2022.
It was sent out to just under 40,000 academics; the response rate was 4%.
The participants, who were 62% male and 80% White, were asked about their perceptions and opinions of UAPs — or UFOs — as well as their experiences with them, SNWS reported.
Of the 14 different disciplines represented, 10% of people worked in political science, physics and psychology, while 6% worked in engineering.
While 19% believed they or someone they knew had witnessed a UAP, 9% reported that they or someone they knew may have seen one.
Phenomena can baffle the cleverest people
Out of the academics, 39% said they did not know what could explain these sightings, SWNS reported.
However, 21% attributed them to natural events and 13% to devices of unknown intelligence.
While 36% said they had some interest in conducting research in the area, only 4% actually had already done some.
What held many back was the lack of research in the field, according to the survey.
Of the participants, 43% said they would be more likely to conduct research if a reputable scholar in their discipline did so first, while 55% said they would be more likely to conduct research if they could secure funding.
“The findings suggest that many U.S. academics across disciplines consider academia’s involvement in research into UAP to be important …”
Study author Dr. Marissa Yingling, of the University of Louisville in Kentucky, said, “The findings suggest that many U.S. academics across disciplines consider academia’s involvement in research into UAP to be important and may be cautiously willing to engage with research into UAP, particularly if others they consider to be reputable within their field do so,” as SWNS reported.
“Open discussions of UAP among academics could enable greater academic involvement in UAP-related research,” she also said.
Of the participants, 37% ranked the importance of further research into UAP as very important or absolutely essential.
Similarly, 64% considered academia’s involvement in UAP-related research to be very important or absolutely essential.
Added Dr. Yingling, “Further surveys in larger and more diverse cohorts are needed to investigate attitudes toward UAP more generally among academics in the USA.”
The study was published in the journal Humanities and Social Sciences Communications, a peer-reviewed open access academic journal published by Nature Portfolio.