Sunday, October 12, 2008

Why I do disease research

The following graph from the AAAS about what sectors get the most research money does a good job of demonstrating why I am not currently doing energy research, and somehow ended up working on cancer. Despite politicians talking about making us energy independent, energy research is funded with less than half the money that it was in the 70s. The corporate picture looks much the same. At one point the oil companies had huge research institutions. Over the same time period these institutions have decayed significantly. You will know congress takes these issues seriously when the green section of the graph expands to at least the size it was in 1980.

Edit: I just read the small print under the graph. I am not entirely sure anymore it is not complete fiction. It fits with what I have seen at Cornell though. A whole lot of talk, and people interested in doing something relative to the amount of funding to actually do stuff. There was almost no primary energy production research here when I was looking for a lab. Maybe two graduate students doing solar research, and a couple biofuels people.

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