The New Einsteins Will Be Scientists Who Share

Via Scoop.itDual impact of research; towards the impactelligent university

From cancer to cosmology, researchers could race ahead by working together—online and in the open. Adapted from Reinventing Discovery: The New Era of Networked Science. Networked science has the potential to speed up dramatically the rate of discovery across all of science. We may well see the day-to-day process of scientific research change more fundamentally over the next few decades than over the past three centuries. But there are major obstacles to realizing this goal. Though you might think that scientists would aggressively adopt new tools for discovery, they have been surprisingly inhibited. Ventures such as the Polymath Project remain the exception, not the rule. Consider the idea of sharing scientific data online. The best-known example of this is the human genome project, whose data may be downloaded by anyone. When you read in the news that a certain gene is associated with a particular disease, you’re almost certainly seeing a discovery made possible by the project’s open-data policy. Despite the value of open data, most labs make no systematic effort to share data with other scientists. As one biologist told me, he had been “sitting on [the] genome” for an entire species of life for more than a year. A whole species of life! Just imagine the vital discoveries that other scientists could have made if that genome had been uploaded to an online database. Mr. Nielsen is a pioneer in the field of quantum computing and the author of “Reinventing Discovery: The New Era of Networked Science,” http://press.princeton.edu/titles/9517.html
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About Wilfred Mijnhardt
RMIMR is my virtual playground, a place to reflect on issues from my professional context, my job as Policy Director at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM). RSM is the international university based business school at Erasmus University Rotterdam. More info here: www.rsm.nl Here is my list of relevant publications on the topic of my RMIMR weblog: http://www.mendeley.com/collections/694621/RMIMR-Repository/ The rss feed for my RMIMR collection is here: http://www.mendeley.com/collections/rss/694621/ Here is my other weblog on impact of research: http://www.scoop.it/t/dualimpact

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