EDITORIAL

Don't ignore the infrastructure

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Science  06 May 2016:
Vol. 352, Issue 6286, pp. 631
DOI: 10.1126/science.aaf9719

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Summary

Large-scale research facilities and new technology development have been essential to answering difficult, often intransigent scientific questions that would otherwise be inaccessible. The recent exciting discovery of gravitational waves by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) is but one of many startling findings that argue for major investments in large- and mid-scale instrumentation development. But such instruments and facilities are just one type of infrastructure that urgently needs investment. Routine laboratories that underpin most scientific activity are equally critical to progress, but in many cases have long been neglected and are deteriorating. A comprehensive strategy for updating these facilities and other infrastructure elements is essential for accelerating scientific momentum.