Devaluing the pursuit of science puts the field at risk

08/22/2013 | Scientist, The (free registration)

Pursuing science for the sake of profit or career advancement, instead of for the sake of knowledge, destroyed the field in post-Soviet Russia, writes postdoctoral researcher Victoria Doronina. A trend in Western nations to commercialize science and undervalue basic research could undermine science for generations, she writes. "If everything is for sale, and if the people who are doing science are not valued, then research loses something that is hard to define, but that is vital to the progress of science -- as the situation in the former Soviet Union has so clearly demonstrated," she writes.

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