BBC News – Canadian government is ‘muzzling its scientists’

BBC News – Canadian government is ‘muzzling its scientists’.

I think there are two sides to this argument. On the one hand we need to encourage scientific entrepreneurship and creativity, and freedom to publish. On the other, it’s important for institutions to protect their ‘brands’ so to speak. Having been responsible for communications policy at IRRI, I saw some at first hand how differences of scientific perspective could lead to conflicting messages emerging from the institute. While such debate internally is healthy, sending mixed messages is oftentimes just not understood by the constituencies that the institute is there to serve. And I have seen instances of  bloody-minded scientists being singular in their pursuit of a specific idea and outcome, not just at IRRI but in other CGIAR centers.

And this is the debate between policy and science that needs to continue.

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