Lisa Randall: A Gilded Age for Science

Lisa Randall:  In some ways we are in a good age of science. I mean I don’t . . . I think actually in many respects science is doing well right now, you know, in terms of . . . But I think there’s just a general fear that that won’t continue . . . that people won’t take it as seriously; that if there are budget cuts that’s where it will happen. I think it’s really important that we recognize the really important role science has played; not just the people doing science, but people being trained as scientists. A lot of the people who have gone out and done important things were trained as scientists. I’m always surprised when I meet people and they tell me . . . they tell me that they were actually . . . A lot of people who read my book, for example, will be in different fields. And there will be people who aren’t doing anything like science now, but they were trained as scientists. And I think we really have to appreciate how critical that is. I think the sort of . . . and how important basic research is, not just applied research. But people really working on fundamental problems being allowed to think about that; and how basic research has had these broad-ranging implications in the future that we didn’t anticipate. So just, I think, a general recognition of the role that science has played would be really important to perpetuating it. Recorded On: 11/2/07

Many fear that if budget cuts need to be made, science will suffer, says Randall.

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