The Chaining of Prometheus: Evolution of a Power Structure for Canadian Science
The development of a national science policy for Canada – and the priorities to be set within any such policy – have been topics of a mounting debate within government and the scientific community. The questions involved are of concern in every country today: Can governments now afford to support laissez-faire 'pure' research to any extent? Or rather, should available resources be allocated to mission-oriented studies determined by government-established national goals?
Professor Hayes assesses the limitations and prospects for success of attempts to impose a pattern of planning on Canadian science and critically examines the reports of the Glassco Commission, the examiners for the OECD, the Lamontagne Committee, and the Science Council, as well as of several university-sponsored groups. The power of the Treasury Board and other parts of the control system also receive attention.
Most reports on Canadian science policy have been productions of federal agencies. Of the outside opinions, with a few notable exceptions, analyses and proposals about the natural sciences have been put forward by social scientists. The author, a scientist and former senior servant who has had experience in the research and administration of natural science both in the university and government, makes a unique, personal analysis of the attempts in Canada to impose national planning and controls over the historical free enterprise system of scientific research and development.