Seventeen prizes were awarded in this year’s ceremony, recognising a diverse group of scientific minds devoted to solving key 21st century issues.
Physics laureate Donna Strickland receives the prize from King Carl Gustaf of Sweden during the Nobel Prize award ceremony in Stockholm on Dec. 10, 2018.
(Pontus Lundahl/Pool Photo via AP)
The winner of the 2018 Nobel Prize in physics says scientists shouldn’t feel pressured to do research that has economic or commercial ramifications. Science for the sake of science is more important.
China’s military may bear the brunt of hits to the country’s scientific reputation.
Roman Pilipey/Pool Photo via AP
In an era of big scientific collaborations, China’s renegade actions have hurt its reputation. As international researchers back away, it may be the country’s military that ultimately suffers.
Money doesn’t grow in flasks – scientists have to find funds outside the lab.
Money always seems tight for university scientists. A sociologist conducted hundreds of interviews to see how they think about funding sources and profit motives for basic and applied research.
Park guards view maps and photos of high-altitude glaciers – information that can be shared with local communities dealing with changing water levels.
Science can’t just stay in the ivory tower. But what does impact really mean and how does it happen? A study of more than a decade of ecological fieldwork projects in Bolivia suggests a better way.
The Golden Age of science is in the future.
The only place to find the Golden Age of Science is in the future, but we need some help in getting there.
It may take time for a tiny step forward to show its worth.
Scientists are rewarded with funding and publications when they come up with innovative findings. But in the midst of a ‘reproducibility crisis,’ being new isn’t the only thing to value about research.
You can’t keep a good scientist down.
Vlad Tchompalov on Unsplash
President Trump’s first year was a rough one for scientists and others who value truth and expertise. Many rallied to the cause, while others used research to make the case for the value of science.
It’s good for scientists to work in glass laboratories.
Science isn’t cold, hard facts uncovered by emotionless robots. Acknowledging how and where values play a role promotes a more realistic view and can advance science’s reputation for reliability.
Impacts of federal research funding can be felt region-wide.
Research dollars don’t stay locked up in academia and government labs. R&D collaborations with the private sector are common – and grow the innovation economy.
Step one is not being afraid to reexamine a site that’s been previously excavated.
Dominic O'Brien. Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation
A team of archaeologists strived to improve the reproducibility of their results, influencing their choices in the field, in the lab and during data analysis.
Collecting the data comes first, but then you have to analyze the data.
Any field that collects and analyzes data relies on statistical techniques to make sense of it all. Modern, more accurate methods should supplant the old ways… but in many cases, they haven’t yet.
What happens to their credibility when scientists take to the streets? February 2017 Stand Up for Science rally in Boston.
The research community tends to assume advocacy doesn’t mix with objectivity. One study suggests there’s room for scientists to make real-world recommendations without compromising their trusted status.
Not much science will get done without the money to fund people and equipment.
What are research dollars actually spent on? Rather than looking at artifacts like publications and patents, a new initiative directly tracks the people and businesses that receive research funding.
There wouldn’t be statues acclaiming Darwin and his theory if it couldn’t stand up to decades of testing.
In science, the word ‘theory’ has a very specific meaning that’s easy for nonscientists to misunderstand or misconstrue. Here’s what a theory must withstand to be accepted by the scientific community.
Bill Gates embraces Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg during an announcement of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to ‘cure, prevent or manage all disease’ by the end of the century.
The priorities of science are being influenced less by government policy and academia, and more by the priorities of the philanthropic giver.
Academic researchers need funding – especially as the federal government devotes less to basic research.
Check image via www.shutterstock.com
With federal support for on-campus R&D dwindling as a percentage of GDP, keeping basic research afloat is a challenge. Schools and researchers are left to try to fill in the funding gaps.
Some changes to visa rules could make travel easier for scientists.
Scientists from the developing world perceive current visa rules as a major impediment to professional travel. They miss out on opportunities to collaborate globally.
One thing they seem to agree on: Not prioritizing science in their platforms.
Neither major party has made science and engineering issues a big part of its platform. But research – and its funding – are crucial if the U.S. wants to maintain status as a global leader.
Experiment design affects the quality of the results.
IAEA Seibersdorf Historical Images
Embracing more rigorous scientific methods would mean getting science right more often than we currently do. But the way we value and reward scientists makes this a challenge.