Middle East Revolts’ Effects on Scientific Research and Research Ethics

MERETI-Network is closely following the uprisings across the region. We are interested in potential changes to scientific research, research ethics and science in general as a result of the overthrow of dictatorial regimes. Starting with Tunisia, where the first revolt occurred, we will be following the chronological order of uprisings in the region. Egypt is next on the list then Libya and so on. MERETI-Network will be dedicating a week for each country. We will be posting and commenting on articles regarding the effects of regime change on research and research ethics. MERETI-Network members are welcome to share ideas and articles they find relevant to the topic.

One Response to Middle East Revolts’ Effects on Scientific Research and Research Ethics

  1. Isabelle Nakhla April 4, 2011 at 9:58 am #

    Others are also interested in research in developing countries and I found a couple articles that might be interesting as a start.
    The University World News on March 30, 2011 posted an article describing research advances in some developed countries. They particularly mentioned that Iran, Turkey and Tunisia universities had an established research base, although not to level yet with industrialized countries. With more investment they can do a lot more.
    “Tunisia has increased the percentage of its gross domestic product spent on research and development from 0.03% in 1996 to 1.25% in 2009, while restructuring its national R&D system to create 624 research units and 139 research laboratories” according to the article. The article also cited James Wilsdon, head of policy at the Royal Society, describing Tunisia among the highest research investment in GDP terms in the region.
    However, the writer of the article was wondering how far these nations can keep up their advantage with unrest in North Africa and uncertainty in other countries.
    In another article by the same journal the hope in advancement in the Arab world is attributed to a “youth wave” in contrast to the rest of the world facing a “silver wave”. The writers are confident that these young people can achieve great things in science if they are given a chance. The role of education systems has been the focus since the unrest started in the Middle East.

    “On the one hand there is enormous grassroots pressure from the bottom up while research in the region is by and large has been from the top down. The two need to be joined up,” said Wilsdon, director of science policy at Britain’s Royal Society.

    More can be read in the report by Britain’s Royal Society on:

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