NHGRI logo
Generic World DNA

Scientific Racism

updated: May 20, 2022

Definition

Scientific racism. Scientific racism is a historical pattern of ideologies that generate pseudo-scientific racist beliefs. That perpetually influences racial bias and discrimination in science and research. Leading scientists across scientific institutions in the 19th and early 20th centuries were proponents of such ideologies. By the mid-20th century, pseudo-scientific racist beliefs were widely disproven. However, evidence shows that scientific racism persists in science and research.



Narration

Scientific racism. Scientific racism is an organized system of misusing science to promote false scientific beliefs in which dominant racial and ethnic groups are perceived as being superior. Scientific racism unfortunately continues to exist, and we must continually monitor science to avoid scientific racism.

Vence Bonham
Vence L. Bonham Jr., J.D.

Acting Deputy Director

National Human Genome Research Institute