Researchers often include an identification of the range of stakeholders for their study in their manuscripts. It is, in fact, increasingly becoming clear that the potential stakeholders for a certain research should be included as early as during the problem formulation stage of the study. This is a necessary step, especially for an ecological risk assessment of the research. Identifying the stakeholders improves research protocols and methods, as well as the actual research implementation process.

Who Benefits?

Although scientific research, especially in certain fields such as medicine and pharmaceuticals, have been criticized for being too expensive, it is able to generate outcomes and impact that can be very rewarding for so many people. In fact, scientific research, even when funded by the government, helps stakeholders save money and make money. Economic growth, one of the primary objectives of any country, is often fueled by technology that comes about through research discoveries. Computers and telecommunications drive many sectors of a country’s economy.

Another example is biomedical research. This area of scientific research has an encompassing consequence on human lives and human suffering. On top of generating revenue for health care organizations, it is expected to reduce costs by decreasing or delaying the outbreak of chronic illnesses. As a matter of fact, until recently, there has been no known treatment that can address or alleviate the symptoms of conditions such as stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, traumatic brain and spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis, and many others.

Who Pays?

Because scientific research is so vital, most people wonder why it does not pay for itself. Furthermore, in a market economy, should taxpayers bear the burden of paying for research since it drives economic growth? The short answer is that unless the general public wants to obtain the social returns from scientific research, there is no alternative to public support. When scientific research involves public funds, the primary question that often arises is: how much money should be allocated and how should it be distributed to ensure continuous progress? Most economies address this by allowing and trusting researchers to determine optimum directions with minimal supervision.

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