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A bad review, reviewed

A science journalist and university president are trading barbs this week over the administrator's less-than-glowing book review in Nature. Last week, Nature published a linkurl:letter;http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v449/n7164/full/449781b.html from science policy journalist Daniel Greenberg, who linkurl:criticized;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/24892/ the review of his latest book in the journal. (Greenberg linkurl:spoke to us;http://www.the-scientist.com/podcasts/thew

By | October 26, 2007

A science journalist and university president are trading barbs this week over the administrator's less-than-glowing book review in Nature. Last week, Nature published a linkurl:letter;http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v449/n7164/full/449781b.html from science policy journalist Daniel Greenberg, who linkurl:criticized;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/24892/ the review of his latest book in the journal. (Greenberg linkurl:spoke to us;http://www.the-scientist.com/podcasts/theweek/2007/09/26/ last month about his book, Science for Sale: The perils, rewards, and delusions of campus capitalism.) In the Nature book review, published September 27, Arizona State University president Michael Crow linkurl:dubs the book;http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v449/n7161/pdf/449405a.pdf an "intriguing, if idealistic, review of the issues surrounding the funding of science in the twenty-first century." Specifically, Crow said he took issue with Greenberg's assertion that academic researchers and institutions should be motivated by curiosity alone, not a drive for funding. It's okay for research universities to compete with each other, Crow notes. "It is not a set of corporate or capitalistic forces that are driving US academia on the path of increased complexity and stress. It is the universities, through their creativity, connectivity, influence and power, that are driving other institutions or nation states to action with science-based competition." In Greenberg's response, he suggests Crow has a conflict of interest, given that he "is renowned for striving to make his institution the biggest in the United States while raising its relatively low academic standing. His impartiality may be open to question as a reviewer of my book." Ouch. Greenberg added that he never said academics should be motivated by curiosity alone, simply quotes a scientist who did. "I prefer to believe that hasty reading by a heavily burdened university president accounts for these errors and omissions." I forwarded Greenberg's letter to Crow (who, amazingly, hadn't seen it), and he sent me a response yesterday (October 25). He called Greenberg's letter "curious indeed," and said he reviewed the work "completely." Not surprisingly, Crow defended his work from Greenberg's allegation. "The work load of college presidents is heavy, but never too heavy to offer critiques of work that need context to be better understood," he said. Both authors are certainly taking the time now to defend their positions.
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Avatar of: Sergio Stagnaro MD

Sergio Stagnaro MD

Posts: 59

October 27, 2007

I have just read two statements in the paper, at which I have paid right attention:?Specifically, Crow said he took issue with Greenberg's assertion that academic researchers and institutions should be motivated by curiosity alone, not a drive for funding?. ?The work load of college presidents is heavy, but never too heavy to offer critiques of work that need context to be better understood". I agree with both of them. However, at my best knowledge, ther?s something more important in preventing the progress of scientific advances, which must be politically correct! For instance, what accounts for the reason that the majority of peer-review Editors (BUT not all, fortunately) are afraid about Biophysical Semeiotics (www.semeioticabiofisica.it, Bibliography)? ALL Biophysical Semeiotics discoveries aren?t politically correct, sounds my answer. In fact, e.g., biophysical-semeiotic constitutions do really exsist (ibidem, and Stagnaro S., Stagnaro-Neri M., Le Costituzioni Semeiotico-Biofisiche.Strumento clinico fondamentale per la prevenzione primaria e la definizione della Single Patient Based Medicine. Travel Factory, Roma, 2004. http://www.travelfactory.it), so that it?s an expensive non-sense to advice ALL individuals undergoing to blood examination for cancer biological markers, diabetes, dyslipidaemia, a.s.o. Finally, I find surprising, and strange altogether, that the paramount argument of my LECTURE at V Virtual International Congress of Cardiology, just now in internet, organized by Federaciòn Argentina de Cardiologia (FAC), i.e., inherited Coronary Artery Disease (CD), conditio sine qua non of coronary heart disorder (!), based on congenital, newborn-pathological, type I, subtype b) Endoarteriolar Blocking Devices, I descovered, recognized bedside in a quantitative way, since birth, with a simple stethoscope (Stagnaro Sergio. Role of Coronary Endoarterial Blocking Devices in Myocardial Preconditioning - c007i. Lecture, V Virtual International Congress of Cardiology. http://www.fac.org.ar/qcvc/llave/c007i/stagnaros.php) is intentionally overlooked (better speaking, ignored) by italian Cardiologists of Società Italiana di Cardiologia. These facts account for the reason, I termed this TIME (See www.ilpungolo.com, Scienza) as Era dei Lumi Spenti.

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Mettler Toledo
BD Biosciences
BD Biosciences