Do you think that if scientific research doesn't have a direct application, it shouldn't be done?

I'm a PhD student My two main research interests are phytoplankton ecology and evo devo of animals, but a response that I get all the time is that "well those aren't applied sciences". Except phytoplankton carry out the majority of photosynthesis (hovering up Carbon Dioxide) and knowing how to manipulate their growth could cause them to sequester huge amounts of CO2. Furthermore some animals can do things like regeneration of lost limbs and understanding how they do it as well as how their systems are related to ours can lead to huge advancements in medical sciences. But that does raise an interesting question; why do research that has no direct or foreseeable application. In fact if you think about it, can you say that now, 406 years on, Galileo's discovery that Jupiter had moons had any application? However, what are your thoughts; if something isn't directly or foreseeably applicable


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Most Helpful Guy

  • No, because a lot of important scientific studies don't have direct applications. Physics is one of them, but physics is fundamental in every other field.

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