Roughly one year ago, Brazilian scientists were faced with severe budget constraints, while public institutions leading the country’s most promising research projects were shockingly dismissed as dens of “shenanigans” by the Education Minister himself.
With Covid-19 sweeping the world off its feet, investments have been pouring in for equipment and infrastructure, in a desperate attempt to fight the pandemic. But governments and the private sector must not forget that investment in scientists and health professionals as individuals should be longstanding, as they are also the best hope to stop the pandemic and to create new technologies. This is the view of Marcia Fournier, a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology and board member of Dimensions Sciences, a non-profit organization that works to foster minorities’ inclusion in scientific environments in the U.S.
In an interview with The Brazilian Report, Dr. Fournier debated the consequences of the pandemic for international science — from the need for long-term investment plans to the perils of misinformation and how unprecedented cooperation may affect research in Brazil and elsewhere.
This interview has been edited for brevity and clarity.