Norwegian researchers will be rewarded for interviews

The Norwegian Association of Higher Education Institutions proposes an economical reward for the institutions based on their researchers‘ willingness to communicate their research. The system is expected to be in operation from 2008. Ridiculous, says The Norwegian Association of Researchers.
Some of the researchers already participating actively in the public debate welcome the proposition:
"Very good," says the famous Norwegian astrophysicist Knut Jørgen Røed Ødegaard to newpaper Aftenposten. "If there are no economical or other carrots to do science communication, the activity can easily be neglected in the daily battle of time. Now researchers that want to communicate have to choose beetween their spare time and valuable research time, says Ødegaard, and adds that the public have a right to know what the researchers are up to.

The Norwegian Association of Higher Education Institutions has presented a report in which they propose that newpaper debate articles, tutorial literature, TV-show participation and interviews should be rewarded economically. Since 2003, high numbers of student points and publications in scientific journals have been rewarded economically for Norwegian universities. Now the Norwegian Association of Higher Education Institutions also wants to make research more visible.

Kristian Mollestad, representative of The Norwegian Association of Researchers at the University of Oslo, does not understand how researchers will have time for more communication. He believes that yet another result focused system will lead to more bureacracy and less time for research itself.
"Since quantity will be rewarded I am afraid that it will affect the quality," he says.
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