How Risk Aversion Is Killing the Spirit of Scientific Discovery

Mother Jones 

The Allen Telescope Array, used by Northern California's SETI Institute in its often difficult-to-fund search for extraterrestrial life.Redding Record Searchlight / Zuma Press This story was originally published by Undark and is reproduced here as part of the Climate Desk collaboration. Science is built on the boldly curious exploration of the natural world. Astounding leaps of imagination and insight--coupled with a laser like focus on empiricism and experimentation--have brought forth countless wonders of insight into the workings of the universe we find ourselves in. But the culture that celebrates, supports, and rewards the audacious mental daring that is the hallmark of science is at risk of collapsing under a mountain of cautious, risk-averse, incurious advancement that seeks merely to win grants and peer approval. I've encountered this problem myself.

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