Buying research
Oct 29, 2015
Bishop Hill in Academia, Ethics

There is a rather interesting article in Times Higher Education today. It considers the question of whether academics are getting a reputation as being for sale. Actually I'm not sure why this is considered a question, as evidence that a significant proportion of academics will write a paper to show pretty much anything is hardly lacking. Who can forget the round robin from WWF to climate scientists trying to find someone to write a paper linking a heatwave in France to climate change? Or the Sarah Muckherjee's claim that most climate research was funded by big green.

The LSE's relationship with its funders has been the source of constant entertainment here at BH, with Colonel Gaddaffi and Jeremy Grantham apparently getting good value for money, so it's fun to see the article uncover that these are not the only parts of the LSE where money seems to be talking. The now notorious "charity" Kids Company seems to have been an active funder of "research" there:

In interviews, the charity’s chief executive, Camila Batmanghelidjh, cited a 2013 report from researchers at the London School of Economics as evidence that the organisation was well managed. However, neither she nor the report itself pointed out that the study had been funded by a £40,000 grant from Kids Company.

Read the whole thing.

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