Monday, May 16, 2011

Misuse of Public Funds for Scientific Research

Certain universities are misusing public funds for scientific research. These universities, funded by the tax-payers dime, are networking and conducting scientific research to develope and increase “for-profit” pharmaceutical pipelines.

Thus enters a new world of academic industrialization of science, a relationship that makes for a conflict of interest not benefiting the public. It is not in the public’s interest to fund such university labs. And why should we?

Pfizer Inc, the largest and wealthiest pharmaceutical giant is one company that is benefiting from such networking practices with publically-funded universities. Through Pfizer's Center for Therapeutic Innovation, Pfizer scientists are relocating onto university campuses and working with publically funded labs and scientists for the sole purpose to increase Pfizer’s drug development, pipeline and patent holdings.

University scientists that “double dip” into both private and public money to support “for profit” private enterprise are not working in the public's interests.  "Double dipping" is not ethical, is not efficient, and is not in the best interest for the public or for science. Public funding should be withdrawn from universities laboratories which network to support “for-profit” industry research.

These public funds should instead be reallocated to other universities that need monies to conduct scientific exploration directed toward the public's good. Many universities remain underfunded while others double dip into private and public funds. Reallocating public monies to well-deserving and well-qualified universities who need funding for scientific exploration will create additional jobs to many qualified scientists.
Don’t misunderstand the reasoning behind this strategy. The public is not demanding to stop scientific research. Rather the public demands reallocation of public money for the public good. Reallocating public monies to universities which are in need of money and conduct research in the public’s interest instead of private interest is a sound economic strategy. In our hard hit economic times, this strategy will create jobs. It also will expand the scientific base which is a more efficient use of public funds to enhance scientific exploration.

It’s budget crisis time. Now is the perfect time to take a closer look at how our public money is being misused by some members in the scientific community for private profiterring. In fact it is time to reevaluate public funding strategies to certain research universities and institutes who double dip into both private and public funds.

Below is a partial list of the universities that are currently networking with Pfizer and double dipping into research funding. These universities and laboratories should undergo reevaluation in their ability to obtain public funding for scientific research:

University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)
Rockefeller University
New York University Langone Medical Center
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
The Mount Sinai Medical Center
Columbia University Medical Center
Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshive University
Weill Cornell Medical College
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)


1 comment:

  1. So you think it's in the public's interest to leave the drug discovery to greedy companies who invent diseases like high cholesterol so they can sell $5 pills to rich white people? Give me a break. At least universities are using the funds to cure REAL diseases like cancer and malaria instead of pseudo-diseases like obesity.