Essay: The Professor, the University and Industry; March 1994; Scientific American Magazine; by Zolla-Pazner; 1 Page(s)
It used to be easy to be a professor. You would read your professional journals, write your scientific papers, teach and give seminars. But universities are in transition and so, therefore, are their faculties. More and more emphasis is being placed on research rather than on teaching. With the constriction of federal research funding and the influx of support from private industry, some see a transformation from university to research institute to industrial subsidiary. So when today's professors hit the big time, they have to read their professional literature and Business Week, write scientific papers and patent applications, teach, give seminars and sit on the scientific advisory boards of various corporations.
This interaction among scientists, universities and industry is not new. But the decrease in government support for research, combined with the explosion of new biotechnology products, has intensified the relationship. It is now more productive--and more complicated.