We are in the midst of a dangerous era, where instant gratification is taking precedent over long term investment in scientific discovery. So much of what we are able to do today is based on basic research done decades ago. Rather than recognizing the incredible value of basic research, our culture is turning more and more toward demanding quick, short-term return on investment for any research project. This is shortsighted, and a subject we’ve covered before.
In the video below, Duke University researcher Sheila Patek talks about her fascinating research into mantis shrimp and trap-jaw ants, and how the basic lessons learned are so essential for driving progress.