Principles of Scientific Research

  • Robert V. Smith


Scientific research has provided knowledge and understanding that has freed humankind from the ignorance that once promoted fear, mysticism, superstition, and illness. Developments in science and scientific methods, however, did not come easily. Many of our ancestors had to face persecution, even death, from religious and political groups because they dared to advance the notion that knowledge and understanding could be gained through systematic study and practice. Today, the benefits of scientific research are understood. We appreciate the advances in the biological and physical sciences that allow the control of environment, the probing of the universe, and communications around the globe. We also appreciate the advances in biochemistry and molecular biology that have led to curative drugs, to genetic counseling, and to an unparalleled understanding of structure—function relationships in living organisms. We look hopefully to the development of life itself and, in concert with social-behavioral scientists, the unraveling of the relationship between mind and brain. Despite the potential moral issues raised by the latter advances, the history of science provides us faith that knowledge and understanding can be advanced for the benefit of humanity.


Pilot Experiment Nobel Laureate Vanadium Steel STEPHEN Hawking Engineering Graduate Student 
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Copyright information

© Robert V. Smith 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert V. Smith
    • 1
  1. 1.PullmanUSA

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