According to an article in ARS Technica, President Donald Trump has finally released the budget for 2018. Included in that document are the budget adjustments for many of the government departments such as the Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy, Department of Agriculture, NASA, Department of Defense, and Department of Health & Human Services.
As with every change in presidency there are budget adjustments, so this really isn’t surprising.
What I will ask is this: Could it be a good thing to limit the budget of these government departments, in favor of encouraging more research to come out truly private (non-government funded) organizations (not necessarily Universities either)? How could we make this work, and based on the scientists we have, could it be sustainable? Would the quality of research increase?
So far, all I’ve heard is how this reduction is a bad idea for various reasons. What factors could make it a great idea?
What do we have to do to be able to pay for it? I don’t know (or pretend to know) how all the science funding stuff works, so that would definitely be a consideration if scientific research were to be fully privatized. Maybe someone a lot smarter than me would be willing to write about that part. I do know that a lot of the private research is being funded by billionaires like Micheal Bloomberg, and Bill Gates. This certainly isn’t a new concept, however, its still worth talking about as its come up again because of this new budget.
A major problem I see with this is getting enough support from our communities to move forward on projects. The sad reality is that a lot of people don’t understand science, and simply don’t care. It will be the job of people in STEM to educate the public, and get them engaged in all facets of our world and universe. The biggest struggle the scientific community faces, is getting people to buy in, and come together to implement the solutions that the science has brought to us. Again, not a new concept.
What do you guys think of privatizing science research?
You can read the whole ARS Technica article here: Trump flips science the bird with new budget
You can read the full Washington Post article here: Billionaires are privatizing science too — not just public education
You can read President’s Trump Budget Here: President Trump’s 2018 Budget