"When faced with decisions about sharing, scientists should consider seriously the broader impact of their decisions on the fundamental characteristics of the scientific enterprise and, when at all possible, err on the side of openness."
NIH plans to make grants that give "principal investigator status to not one investigator, as is now the norm, but to all key members of the research team." Whether postdocs will attain that coveted designation is not yet clear, but "it would at least be allowable as far as the agency is concerned."
"It is better for marketability to be someone considered to have expertise in murine T cell immunology than someone who considers themselves an expert on how to protect a mouse from anthrax," says Altmann.
"We're visual communicators and the target audience that we communicate with can be very different whether it's a jury in a courtroom or a high school student using a biology textbook, the level of information is very different," says Linda Wilson-Pauwels, Director, Biomedical Communications Program, University of Toronto.
If history shows anything, it's that taking money away from people who have it and giving it to people who don't is a very difficult thing to do, whether it's scientists or serfs, postdocs or the poor.