Essay 2: Over the past 20 years, commercial influences on scientific research have become increasingly detrimental. Discuss.
The business world has showed increasing interest in expanding their cooperation with scientific research centers during the last two decades. However, the impact of the alliance between business and science has hardly been positive. For the most part, commercial pressure has had such a negative impact on scientific research that few academics have been able to retain their independence (Langley, 2009). This essay will analyze both scientific research areas and research results that have been harmed by business due to the lack of independence from business, using some examples to demonstrate it.
Limited negative impact
Over the past 20 years, the academic landscape has been altered in a drive for profit. The rapid spread of partnerships between businesses and universities has led to some disciplines becoming so intertwined with industry that very little scientific research has been able to keep independent (Langley, 2009). Admittedly, the industry model which combined the computer science and software science with business is basically a success. The alliance benefits the whole society, while the research is not harmed by business. However, this seems to be the only positive case in the cooperation between science and commerce, and since computers and software are relative young compared to other science and industry, its long-term influence can hardly be decided yet. In most cases, commercial pressure has damaging influences on scientific research.
Restricted research area
Firstly, commercial bias is evident in terms of which areas of scientific research are selected for funding, which restricts the research of non-instrumental in the public interest. Instrumental or ‘applied’ research is intended to be immediately useful, often for economic or financial interests, consequently, there is enough funding for...
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