Summary Anderson, M. S., Ronning, E. A., Vries, R. D., & Martinson, B. C. (2007). The Perverse Effects of Competition on Scientists’ Work and Relationships. Science and Engineering Ethics, 13 (4), 437–461.

Competition for things such as funding, positions and prestige in science is a fact of life for scientists who are based in the United States. Generally this competition has been regarded as positive. However it also comes with negative consequences for science as well as for the lives and careers of scientists.Michael J. Fox also saw that competition among scientific groups has a negative effect on the progress of the research on Parkinson’s Disease. In this study 51 early- and mid-career scientists are asked about how they think that competition affects their work and relationship with others in their field. They had a lot to say about the negative sides of competition. There are six categories of competition’s effects.CompetitionCompetition underlies the distribution of resources and rewards. It is called implicit when in organisations individuals or groups have a common interest in resources that are scarce or finite. It becomes explicit when things such as a grant competition, a faculty hiring process or journal peer review decides who gets the rewards. Competitiveness is different that competition. Competitiveness is something that emerges from competition. This study focusses on competition and its effect on science and not on competitiveness. Positive effects of competition on scienceCompetition in science has positive effects, which was emphasized by analysts in the past. They said that competition leads to a better evaluation of ideas, work, proposals and qualifications so it leads to open examination and fair judgment. It is called universalism when all the people can join the open competition and defend their ideas and work. It is also said to advance innovation and that competition would lead research universities to be more productive, creative and succesful. It would lead to extraordinary effort which leads to a faster progress of science. Negative effects of competition on scienceThe reported negative effects of...

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