EDITORIAL

Brexit and European science

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Science  20 Oct 2017:
Vol. 358, Issue 6361, pp. 279
DOI: 10.1126/science.aaq1700

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  • Brexit and EU science problem is like a "Whack-A-Mole" global-players game

    Alex Halliday et al., wrote an article entitled "Brexit and European Science" published in Science (1). Brexit-interest pursuit means maximizing UK-interest while EU-interest pursuit maximizing EU-interest. Imagine two circles Venn diagram. The intersected area means the common interest. The larger non-intersected areas, the stronger contradiction exists between UK and EU. Brexit-interest pursuit and EU-interest pursuit, both seek the local minimum respectively. In other words, nobody knows what is the global optimum solution for advancing Science. The best solution is for Brexit and EU to increase the common intersected area in the Venn diagram by achieving the certain compromise. Democratic voting does not guarantees economic improvement. From the stochastic computing viewpoint, we need more lessons to understand/learn the economic success/stability. This problem is not solved by two players, but significantly influenced by the many other countries. Brexit and EU science problem is like a "Whack-A-Mole" global-players game which is more complicated than that mentioned by Alex Halliday et al. The stronger local optimum sought by Brexit/EU-interest pursuit respectively, the worse scenario will be played.

    References:
    1. Alex Halliday et al., "Brexit and European Science," Science, 20 Oct 2017, 358, 6261, pp.279.

    Competing Interests: None declared.
  • Influence of political upheavals on science and technology
    • Shino Iwami, Project Researcher, University of Jyväskylä

    Alex Halliday and Jörg Hacker are worrying about disconnection of science and technology cooperation by Brexit, and they tackle a shift to new framework to continue the corporation (1).
    In 2016, Brexit and the United States of America (USA) presidential election occurred. Observing trends of science and technology on the Web of Science, the ratios of academic papers of England and the USA in the world decreased in 2016, and they do not perfectly recover from impacts of the political upheavals as of October 20, 2017.
    - USA: 26.928% in 2015, 26.292% in 2016, 26.618% in 2017.
    - China: 13.603% in 2015, 14.242% in 2016, 16.538% in 2017.
    - England: 7.045 % in 2015, 6.870 % in 2016, 7.003% in 2017.
    - Canada: 4.184% in 2015, 4.093% in 2016, 4.225% in 2017.
    - France: 4.231% in 2015, 4.132% in 2016, 4.156% in 2017.
    In contrast, those of China and Canada jump up in 2017. One reason is presumed to be that France, China and Canada welcomed immigrants from the USA (2).
    Fortunately, Brexit may give a short-term impact by the efforts of scientific societies of the United Kingdom and the European Union (1). However what will occurs if the influence lasts for a long time? For example, Japan whose evolution of science and technology stagnates in approximately 20 years and is relatively isolated is now experiencing the deflation spiral of economy, compliance, science and technology, and others (3). It should be noted that the isolation of scienc...

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    Competing Interests: None declared.