It’s not just about the money: Australia is failing science

First published on PCMag.com – November 13th, 2014

Photo by Lucas Vasques on Unsplash

 

T

he system is failing our scientists and the people that could very well be the key to our society’s future.

The Australian government’s low priority for STEM is old news. Sure, we have a science council but we’ve lost a dedicated science minister and that 2015 budget doesn’t have room for our scientists either. The very people who are coming up with solutions to illness and improved technology and directly impacting our economy even though it seems invisible? They are being ignored.

Climate change? Fairy tales. Microbiological research that could be developed into an epidemic-preventing vaccine? We’re more concerned with exports at the moment. Rising problems with antibiotics resistance? Your research takes too long, get funding elsewhere.

How very disappointing. So we rounded up some STEM professionals for a chat and discovered something much worse: even the system is failing our scientists and the people that could very well be the key to our society’s future.

The government keeps talking about the ‘knowledge economy’ but they are driving the brains out of the economy. Some are leaving the country. Some are giving up science all together.

But why? The simple answer is, people just don’t care about science. Probably because they don’t understand it. And these are the people making the decisions for us…

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