Thursday, December 13, 2007

Funding Scientific Research

Good Calories, Bad Calories "Funding agencies like to support studies that will give positive results, and they like to support studies that themselves support the beliefs of the funding agents -- i.e., the dogma. So it's hard to get money to really test a hypothesis, because such a test implies that you might find out that your hypothesis is wrong and not worth pursuing further. And it's certainly hard to get money to pursue a hypothesis that conflicts with the establishment's beliefs, because everyone involved with deciding whether your grant proposal is worth funding will also believe that you're dead wrong about what you say, and so why bother spending money to find out? The result is a world in which, in general, the funding helps to assure that only established beliefs are tested, and when they are, that they're confirmed -- whether they're actually right or not."