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Salient: Victoria University Students' Paper. Vol. 28, No. 9. 1965.

Pure Or Applied Science?

Pure Or Applied Science?

During a discussion on the above subject Professor R. H. Clark of the Geology Department gave a great deal of good advice to New Zealand scientists. He told the delegates at the Science Student Conference that New Zealanders often complain that science hasn't a chance to develop here because of the smallness of the country and the population.

It is a fact that because of our financial situation we cannot compete with larger countries in expensive pure research and we should be foolish to try. But the New Zealand environment is suitable for many applied sciences. The New Zealander has a national vigour and is very good at improvisation, and with these talents we should make full use of the natural laboratory surrounding us.

The most successful sciences in this country all make use of the environment. Marine research is very active here, and atmospheric sciences such as theories on climate control, and studies of the upper atmosphere in Canterbury are other examples. Consequently, Professor Clark feels that New Zealanders should concentrate on applied science in the sense of science applied to our country, and we should leave the pure sciences to the larger countries who have not the natural advantages we have in New Zealand.