Is Industry Corrupting Academic Research?

Last Updated Nov 4, 2009 2:25 PM EST

Over half of academiclife science researchers maintained financial ties with industry, according to survey results published in Health Affairs.
Here are the key details about the relationship between universities and corporate America, according to the Wall Street Journal:
About a third of the respondents said they had served as consultants, nearly a quarter said they had been paid speakers and 20% said they had received research funding from industry. That last figure is down from 28% of researchers who said they received research funding from industry in a similar survey conducted in 1995.
The authors suggest a number of possible causes of the drop in researchers who said they got industry funding for research, including a big increase in NIH research funding since 1995 and more scrutiny of academic-industry ties.
Interestingly, it was also found that faculty with industry support "were more productivethan faculty without such support on virtually every measure." However, we cannot conclude that corporate support caused the productivity surge, since it's possible that the most productive researchers tend to attract the most money.

  • Stefan Deeran

    Stefan Deeran helps environmental nonprofits and green businesses develop and execute their new media campaigns. He also publishes The Exception magazine, a nonpartisan news platform serving his home state of Maine. You can follow him on Twitter @RStefanDeeran or via Facebook.