Nature Takes a Step in the Right Direction

Nature, England's leading scientific journal, has announced a new policy. Beginning in October, it will "be encouraging authors to declare any competing financial interests in relation to research papers." This is "a welcome and probably inevitable decision," reports the Guardian of London, noting that science has become "intimately linked with industry. ... Scientists go to agribusiness to finance research into plant science or genetic engineering; they go to pharmaceutical companies to back pioneering studies of promising molecules; they go to physics industries to finance experiments that could end with ever more amazing technology. And, increasingly, the scientists themselves are involved in start-up companies, the cash-generating, research-financing enterprises of tomorrow. Don't blame the scientists: blame the system."