Just a short post on a Saturday night/Sunday morning to call attention to Fareed Zakaria’s most recent opinion piece in the Washington Post, published back on Wednesday, June 20. In case you missed it, worth the read!
In this column, one of a number on the importance of science and innovation that Mr. Zakaria has written over the years, he notes that government funding of the human genome project cost some $4B over fifteen years, but that estimates of the economic payback of this investment put it at $800B…a benefit-to-cost ratio of 200.
And those benefits are still coming in.
If a country totaling only 3-4% of the world’s population wants to be a force for public good throughout the 21st century, this is the way to do it. Keep the investment in science high…and get the other bits right as well. Mr. Zakaria shines a spotlight on government rules and regulations governing drugs and pharmaceuticals, the extensive clinical trials and lengthy waiting periods that slow innovation.
It’s easier to kill innovation than to foster it.