It's alive! I wrote an article on Jeff Epstein, the MIT Media Lab, gee-whiz demos that don't work in real life, and the problem that unites them: Sugar Daddy Science. #sugardaddyscience
How do we stop sugar-daddy science? The only long-term solution is to bring back federal funding so researchers can stop relying on donations from the beneficiaries of widening inequality.
“The problem is, blank checks never come without strings. Something’s always exchanged: access, status, image. That’s where sugar-daddy science comes in.”
The Epstein/Media Lab scandal is the kind of thing that happens, says, when labs push flashy projects to pull in wealthy funders—and science becomes a mere fashion accessory for plutocrats.
As much as I like Taber's work, and absolutely agree w/ idea that we need more a more robust funding system for science, the idea of a rosy, frictionless past in which governments and foundations issued scientists blank checks is flat-out wrong.
Science funded by layman philanthropists will tend to be biased towards flashier projects, possibly at the expense of merit. I think this is a valid critique, but not the whole story.
I agree with the spirit of this, but this sentence-- "Historically, research has been funded by grants"--is just not true. Would love a real conversation on science funding, not based on a mythic golden age.
This is an important perspective on the MIT Media Lab, the Epstein scandal, and the so-called “Food Computer”. Read this. (Glad that wrote this. A must-follow on Twitter.)
This is an important perspective on the MIT Media Lab, the Epstein scandal, and the so-called “Food Computer”. Read this. (Glad that wrote this. A must-follow on Twitter.)
Sugar-daddy science, says, is when plutocrats pay for flashy research projects. "If the labs are sleek, the demos look cool, and they both reflect the image the donor wants, then mission accomplished. Nothing needs to actually work."
Sugar-daddy science, says, is when plutocrats pay for flashy research projects. "If the labs are sleek, the demos look cool, and they both reflect the image the donor wants, then mission accomplished. Nothing needs to actually work."
Sugar-daddy science, says, is when plutocrats pay for flashy research projects. "If the labs are sleek, the demos look cool, and they both reflect the image the donor wants, then mission accomplished. Nothing needs to actually work."
"Sugar Daddy Science" Insightful and important critique of the root causes of the Epstein/Media Lab affair in the from And the term "sugar daddy science" (which she adapts from ) is absolutely brilliant and spot on.
On research, private funding and ethics:’The pure pursuit of science, freed from worldly concerns like politics and money, is a seductive illusion. In reality, it ends up attracting the very worst people’
Sarah Taber's "sugar daddy science" essay now in "The Atlantic." Impressive turnaround time, and an excellent reminder of the dangers plutocrats pose to science.
“How do we stop sugar-daddy science? The only long-term solution is to bring back federal funding so researchers can stop relying on donations from the beneficiaries of widening inequality.”
"The MIT Media Lab—whose mission amounted to We’re basically down for anything—was easily hijacked by social climbers and scoundrels. The pure pursuit of science... is a seductive illusion. In reality, it ends up attracting the very worst people."
V. smart from on the Media Lab and problem donors : "How do we stop sugar-daddy science? ... bring back federal funding so researchers can stop relying on donations from the beneficiaries of widening inequality.”
Science must use the scientific method--hypothesis, sound methodology, experiments, analysis of results. The world has so many problems that need real solutions. Let's not waste our intelletual, financial, and scientific resources on "sugar-daddy science."
2/ donations from the beneficiaries of widening inequality."
1.The gov. is slashing science funding. 2."Many scientists spend more time writing grant applications than actually doing science." 3."blank checks never come without strings."
The Problem with Sugar-Daddy Science, by Sarah Taber /
The Problem With Sugar-Daddy Science. The pursuit of money from wealthy donors distorts the research process in the US —and yields flashy projects that don’t help and don’t work.
The problem with sugar-daddy science, and what to do about it. says "If the labs are sleek, the demos look cool, and they both reflect the image the donor wants, then mission accomplished. Nothing needs to actually work."
Interesting take on research funding.