A discussion on science funding

Vote for science?

As grants and budgeting priorities have been put under greater scrutiny due to the corona pandemic, scientists are dealing with new challenges in the way their work is funded. These will be felt by generations to come. Is the current division of money well meditated? How to determine what kind of research is worthy of support?

Some scientific fields have gained capital and prestige due to public perception and political interests, whilst others are struggling to find funders. It is worth asking, is the current division of money well meditated and for the long term greater good, or is it reactionary and short term? Should we fund more research into practical and lifesaving science, or should more funding be sent to the fundamental sciences for the long term? Should financing be based on the expected/speculated societal interest as determined by the state, or should academia be the prime discriminator of what research is worthy of support?

In this BètaBreak edition we will discuss such questions within a panel on the handling of the university budget, research grants, and the politics of science funding. While discussing the subject of science funding, the upcoming Dutch elections will be kept in mind. Translating this policy debate to which political party would be best for the exact sciences and which party deserves your vote is left as an exercise taken by the audience.

About the BètaBreak

The BètaBreak is a monthly science platform of the Faculty of Science of the UvA. Every month different experts are invited to speak about the latest developments in science. Former editions discussed themes such as cultured meat, nuclear energy and psychedelics. The BètaBreak seeks to analyse various scientific topics from an interdisciplinary perspective. The platform has had the honour to welcome guests as Robbert Dijkgraaf, Eric Verlinde and Nobel Prize laureate Ben Feringa. For more information, go to: http://www.betabreak.nl

About the speakers

Jan Lintsen is since 1 September 2017 member of the Executive Board of the UvA, responsible for Finance and Operational Management. After graduating with distinction from the University of Twente with a degree in public administration, Lintsen worked for the central government (Rijksoverheid) for over 27 years. Between 2013 and 2017 Jan Lintsen was member of the Executive Board of the Hague University of Applied Sciences.

Karin van de Sande is since January 2013 active within the research funding advice team of the UvA-HvA Technology Transfer Office. The team advises UvA and HvA researchers about research funding possibilities and supports funding applications. Van de Sande provides support for applications, training and advice to several research institutes of the Faculty of Science. Her scientific background consists of a post-doc (as recipient of a Marie Curie fellowship) at the University of York. Before this, she did her PhD research at the University of Wageningen.

© Bètabreak

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