Authorship can often cause behind-the-scenes difficulties for scientists. These problems are magnified for a project with as many researchers as LIGO. As big international science becomes more commonplace, do you foresee changes to the ways in which scientists author papers and are credited for their work? Do you think the current model of scientific funding plays a role in maintaining the status quo of scientific authorship? Explain your answers.
A lot of it may have to do with how funding is received, but also due to how restricted academic journals become. I believe research done with taxpayer money must be public, and scientists shouldn’t be granted money primarily by the number of papers they publish or their success, because it creates an obstacle for younger researchers. We need to appreciate science has a value for itself regardless of how fast we can extract an economic advantage from it, science has value because we value knowledge as we value art.
It is easier for an individual to get funding if he has a long list of papers with his name on them. This is clearly the problem. Individuals should be able to gain reputation simply by having worked in a particular project.
According to the ICMJE, an author can be considered as such whenever he or she satisfies four fundamental criteria:
1.Significant contribution to the ideas and design of the research project, generation of experimental data, and their analysis or interpretation;
2.Intellectual contribution, such as drafting or critical revision of the work;
3.Final approval of the manuscript before the submission process, and
4.Accountability for all the aspects of the research project, including accuracy and integrity.
I’m coming from the industry and all of the projects I was involved with have been those multi-corporate ones. In that world the role of funding is essential in order to keep sthe status quo in collecting references for the companies and individuals. In any case one cannot underestimate the enormous potential of career boost of contributing to the modern international scientific megaproject. Nowadays there seems to be the very same innovation boost in e.g. LIGO as in industrial megaprojects. In modern era every new innovation generates two or three more or less feasible new innovations. Unfortunately this innovation boost is not necessarily always measured in units of published scientific papers. In my opinion those side product innovations of any scientific projects should be developed for the markets. One example would be this course which is one side product of the LIGO-project. Hopefully this course generates one or more feasible innovations.
I would like to see more collaboration taught at the 5th and 6th grad level. I would like to see colleges partner with local K trough 12 to teach scientific methodology and be involved with experiments to garner interest in young adults’
Although funding may always play a role in scientific authorship in the near future it may hold a position of less significance . The key scientist at the head of any research should always be recognised and credited. I believe if changes are made to the way scientist author papers it will be to ensure everyone who makes significant contributions in a project is acknowledged although this is a more innate issue ,people tend to hold one person in mind when thinking or referring to research completed by a whole group.
politics here in the US plays a big role in funding the projects that scientists could conceive…if it were not because of politics, scientists would’ve already tried to option to envision at building a Dyson Sphere. But who is going to fund such project at the rate that projects like LIGO or CERN get funded by politics.
As big international science becomes more commonplace, do you foresee changes to the ways in which scientists author papers and are credited for their work?
I do foresee changes to the ways in which scientists author papers and are credited for their work. The large scale projects will require top world talent for the experiments and science that is running these systems. The smaller contributions will create a subclass of papers that will lead to the rise of data analysis, modeling, equipment design, and construction work. Much like techniques in the medical field are narrowed down to a specialized task on a much larger scale contribution.
Do you think the current model of scientific funding plays a role in maintaining the status quo of scientific authorship?
Today I think funding plays a role. In the coming years, I think endowments will begin to realize they have a greater obligation to more narrowly define how funding will be doled out. Data analysis models for example will create more highly specialized applications and tools that might be used in other fields. This might be the original scope of the funding aspect but can be funded on its own part.
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