Value in basic research too

In its biggest shake-up to date, the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*Star) has decided to drop its cookie-cutter approach to funding and evaluating research. From next month, sweeping changes will be made to the agency's 18 research institutes, in an effort to make the country's largest public sector research agency more nimble in its use of talent and funds.

Currently, all research institutes are given a core budget in a similar way. Under the new model, they will be funded differently, depending on the nature of their activities. The winners will be those who work closely with industry: They will enjoy guaranteed funding for their work.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 31, 2018, with the headline 'Value in basic research too'. Print Edition | Subscribe