nep-sog New Economics Papers
on Sociology of Economics
Issue of 2010‒07‒10
one paper chosen by
Jonas Holmström
Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration

  1. The Economics of Science - Funding for Research By Paula E. Stephan

  1. By: Paula E. Stephan
    Abstract: Scientific research has properties of a public good; there are few monetary incentives for individuals to undertake basic research and the conventional wisdom is that the market, if left to its own devices, would under- invest in research in terms of social benefits relative to social costs. Thus research, especially of a basic nature, has traditionally been supported by either the government or philanthropic institutions. More recently, industry has also begun to support research conducted in nonprofit institutions. This paper explores the various sources of support for research in the university sector. Although the focus is on the United States, the paper discusses trends in other countries as well. The paper also examines mechanisms for distributing funds, including peer review and performance based distribution. The paper closes with a case study of the National Institutes of Health doubling during the period 1998-2002.
    Date: 2010–07

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