What is one reason funding has such an important effect on scientific research?

A) people are not interested in new discoveries

B) it encourages scientists to promote findings

C) research results cannot be published without it

D) funding targets specific areas of research

3 Answers

  • The influence of money on scientific research is a very complex subject. The idea that you can adequately capture this complexity with a simple multiple choice question strongly suggests that the author of this question is not a scientist, has never done scientific research, and has no real appreciation for what they are teaching.

    Sorry for the tone of the answer but one of my pet ᴘᴇᴇves is "science questions" of exactly this type, where there is no one right answer and selecting an answer that someone judges to be correct is certainly not evidence of any deeper understanding of the subject matter. All 4 options are partly right and partly wrong.

    A) Some people are deeply interested in new discoveries. Talk to the parents of a child who has been diagnosed with a rare disease.

    B) Unfortunately, there are all too common instances where scientists promote findings that lead to continued funding rather than findings that show this particular avenue of research is very unlikely to achieve the desired results.

    C) It is generally true that scientific research can’t be published without funding because, in general, it costs money to do research. However, this is not always the case (depending on exactly how you define funding. Nobel Prize winners receive $1 million dollars to do with as they wish. If they wish to spend their money on researching some aspect of science that no one else on the planet will give them money to research, they can do it themselves.

    D) Yes, in general, organizations decide to spend money on specific things but, again, there are exceptions and Nobel Prize winners are only one example.

  • That’s a damn stupid bunch of answers to a fairly stupid question. Funding is important to science because science costs money. You can’t do science unless someone pays for it. Obviously.

  • Gradpoint answer:

    B) it encourages scientists to promote findings

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