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Review article

Privatization of Science – a Silent Phenomenon

Lidija Gajski ; Health Center Zagreb – Center, Zagreb, Croatia

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page 263-278

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Privatization is one of the most significant phenomena and characteristics of contemporary science, but also probably its greatest deviation. Through the growing funding of research by private companies, science has been increasingly used to create profit. It is instrumentalized by being reduced to a marketing tool. In medicine today, most of the applied research is sponsored by the producers of agents and equipment for diagnostics and treatment. Through the manipulation by the methodology of research, result presentation and selective publication, they produce findings which are invalid and biased. The topic of research is less and less relevant for the health and well-being of the population. With the medical science being privatized, the prospects of significant discoveries and progress in disease treatment and prevention are slim. A rise of costs is inevitable, as well as the decrease in the availability. Along with the privatized medical science, the chances for more significant findings and progress in treatment and illness prevention are not good. The growth in expenses is apparent, as well as the downturn in the availability of healthcare services and the erosion of trust in science and scientists. Privatization of science is a phenomenon which is rarely discussed. It deserves greater attention because it can have significant consequences on the nature and the excellence of scientific findings and is relevant in the social and cultural context.


Privatization of science, commercialization of science, manipulation of scientific research, conflict of interest in medicine

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