Scientists Step Onto the Political Stage

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Science  17 Jul 1998:
Vol. 281, Issue 5375, pp. 326-327
DOI: 10.1126/science.281.5375.326

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With the Communist ruling class swept away, scientists across eastern and central Europe are reaching high political office. Many of this new breed of scientist-politicians believe that researchers' privileged status and aura of independence during the Soviet-dominated era make them ideal candidates to step into the power vacuum, and the analytical skills they bring with them are well suited to the confused politics of the new democracies. But many also believe that this unusual mixing of cultures may be short-lived as a new political generation, trained in law and the social sciences, is beginning to emerge.