Reply to William Tivol

Alexander Berezin berezin at MCMAIL.CIS.MCMASTER.CA
Fri Jun 9 19:22:36 EST 1995

Dear Bill:

Thank you for your thoughtful comments.
It is always encouraging to discover
people who are capable of jumping over
the imposed mythology.

Another article on peer review & funding
have just appeared in "New Scientist".
It is partially quoted below:

"NEW SCIENTIST" on NSERC's funding system
and limitations of peer review

Recent issue of "New Scientist" (27 May 1995)
has an article by Arturo Sangalli, professor of
mathematics from Lennoxville, Quebec, titled


The article strongly supports the criticism
of funding policies of NSERC (Natural Sciences
and Engineering Research Council of Canada)
along the same lines as recent mailings by
CARRF (Canadian Associtaion for Responsible
Research Funding).

A.Sangalli mentiones the judicial review of
NSERC proceedures by the Federal Court of
Canada at the request of Dr. Kok-Keong Tan of
the Dalhousie University, and the fact that CARRF
is an intervenor in this case with a mandate
to address the "inherent bias and lack of objectivity
in the peer review system as operated by NSERC".

Another fundamental conflict of interests mentioned
in the article, is the fact that "scientists serving
on the award committees are themselves often recipients
of sizable grants".

Sangalli also criticises NSERC for its insistence
on the "Collaborative Grants Program", despite the
massive opposition to this program from the Canadain
University community.

"... the real power to direct research is political
and is wielded by the bureaucrats who create the 
programms, allocate budgets, appoint the committees
and impose the rules of the funding game".
Alex Berezin   

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