What are the Arguments for and Against Government Science Funding

Science is a very important field that has affected many of our lives in the long run. Especially today with more technological advances than ever before, science continues to play an even more important role in our lives. In the world of science there are two main forms, government funded science, and science that is not funded by the government. This is still very much debated upon, but regardless what are the arguments for and against government science funding?

The first argument that people most likely will state when discussing the topic of government science funding is that of: “without government support science will not have the funds.” Another similar argument to this is: “private firms cannot claim exclusive profits from scientific discoveries, which means that they will not get involved in funding scientific research in the first place.” With these two arguments in mind here are some of the arguments that go against the first claim or argument. Historically Britain spent very little money funding scientific research in the 19th century. But regardless of this lack of funding from the state they were still ahead in this area than countries such as France and Germany, who spent a large amount of money on scientific research. Also look at the examples of past scientists: was their research funded by the state? The majority were not funded by the state and were instead funded privately. 

Some of the arguments that go against the second claim I stated is that again the majority of scientific research is funded privately, this is because firms are known to exchange laboratory space to scientists in exchange for the scientists to keep up with the latest new knowledge within science. This saves time and money because it keeps the scientists doing their work. As a side argument, government funded institutions in general usually push out the agenda of the government which is a risk to the government funding of science.

To conclude, regardless of the claims that back up government scientific funding, historically the majority of scientific advancements were funded privately. Also the involvement of the state in scientific research historically did not exactly bring forth more scientific advancement. Thus, these are the arguments for and against government science funding.

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