Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Research Funding

Many have asked me on how to get funding for their research. According to the Chart which I set up recently in my article on ‘Pyramid of Research Activities’ there are many sources of funds available for ‘research’in Singapore. These include:

1. Basic research, academic research and strategic research, funding comes from the government – (primarily through universities, education institutions, military establishments and specially estalished R & D organisations and Departments).

2. With mission oriented research the funding can come from contracts with private corporations/companies, foundations and aid giving agencies.

3. Funding for problem solving and innovative research which provides incrementatl inprovements in service, process or products the funding usually comes from the normal operating budget of the companies/organisations/departments involved.

Many are facing difficulties in getting funding for their research in spite of so much funds being made available in Singapore nowdays. Why is this so? . My advice is to identify which group of reseacher you below to and act accordingly to get the priority you deserve for the project.

If you still do not get the support or what you need then you may have to consider the following:
a. change the topic/supervisor of your research,
b. change your place of work,
c. do something else other than research for a while.
d. think ourside the box or challenge the status quo. This can be a hazardous stand to take. You will have the break and the respect you need as a good research worker when you succeed.

Research is a noble human activity. It is based on intellectual investigation whose objectives are to discover, interpret and revise human knowledge on the aspect of our life and the world around us. Research need not have to always use the scientific method of the exact sciences so long as it produces knowledge which can be useful, easily absorbed, diffused and used for the betterment of our fellowmen. Never ask others to help you to raise funds for your research projects unless they are also part of your team or your supervisor. Making others responsible for what you do is not a fair proposition.

Many of our research scientists managed to do their research throughout their lives by following some of the suggestions listed above. All you need do is to have some courage to do what you believe in. You must have confidence in yourself if you expect others to have faith in you.

Lee Kum Tatt

2 comments:

Melvin Chen said...

Hi Dr. Lee,

I'm always blessed to read your blog, ideas and sharing about life. It never ceases to amaze me how committed you are to research and development.

Given your success and achievements, most would have felt they have completed their purpose in life and stop what they had been doing.

Your life is a great inspiration to many.

Lee Kum Tatt said...

Dear Melvin,
Thanks for your comments. Glad you find my articles useful. I always enjoy sharing what little I have with those who may find them useful. Many have helped me in the same way all my life.