a Grand Scheme for systematics? (was Re: Electronic publishing (fwd))
Shawn Landry (BIO)
landry at CHUMA.CAS.USF.EDU
Tue Mar 12 11:06:36 CST 1996
> Are our present sources of funding adequate now, and perceived as
> likely to be stable in the future, or are other folks a bit more
> pessimistic (as I am) and feel that here, too, we're dealing with a
> dwindling resource? What happens to many US collections, for instance, if
> NSF some day eliminates their museum improvement grant program? Here's a
> pretty central problem, no? What can we do to "take it on"?
I am NOT saying we should eliminate hard copy publication, but...
One of the potential benefits of electronic publication (and especially
internet related information dissemination) is that "laypeople" will have
greater access to our research. Soon, the internet will be available via
standard cable connections on a standard television (let's not bring up
the bandwidth problem). If John and Betty Doe could visit the local
herbarium (or other collection), learn about the reasons for preserving
it and the research that accompanies our collections, then maybe they
would understand the importance of it's existence.
I would argue that, since NSF is guided by politics, greater involvement
by the general public might just result in increased funding. Look at
the endangered species that get the most press. Aren't they the ones
that also recieve the most funding?
- shawn landry
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