Usefulness of Useless Knowledge

"Flexner makes two points that seem to me particularly important right now, especially for policy makers thinking about higher education in the United States. One is that it is impossible to predict what research will turn out to be "useful" and therefore it’s foolish to...
“In some sense, the evidence of the usefulness of science is all around us,” Robbert Dijkgraaf said. “It’s in our back pockets, in our blood streams. We are governed by science—everybody is, even the people who aren’t supportive of it. But we are simply not...
Video of Robbert Dijkgraaf's Google Author Talk "The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge" now available here . The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge | Talks at Google: Robbert Dijkgraaf , Institute Director and Leon and Levy Professor Date : March 28, 2017...
On the face of it, usefulness seems more definable in the fields of science, where it can be expressed in theses, discoveries, inventions and products. But even here usefulness can be elusive. In his article “The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge” (contained in the...
Klaus Taschwer of Der Standard reviews The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge (Princeton University Press, March 2017) by founding IAS Director Abraham Flexner with a companion essay by current IAS Director Robbert Dijkgraaf . Of Flexner's...
Gillian Tett of the Financial Times reviews The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge (Princeton University Press), founding Director Abraham Flexner 's influential 1939 essay newly republished with a companion essay by Robbert Dijkgraaf , Director and Leon Levy Professor...
Joseph E. Davis of the Hedgehog Review reflects on The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge (Princeton University Press, March 2017) by founding IAS Director Abraham Flexner with a companion essay by current IAS Director Robbert Dijkgraaf . Davis writes, “Following in...
"Almost every discovery has a long and precarious history. Someone finds a bit here, another a bit there. A third step succeeds later and thus onward till a genius pieces the bits together and makes the decisive contribution."—from the essay “The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge.”...
Jean Worsley of the National Science Teachers Association reviews The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge (Princeton University Press, March 2017) by founding IAS Director Abraham Flexner with a companion essay by current IAS Director Robbert Dijkgraaf . Worsley writes of Flexner's vision of...
Video of Curious Paradox: The Usefulness of Knowledge at the New York Public Library now available here . Curious Paradox: The Usefulness of Knowledge at the New York Public Library Participants: Robbert Dijkgraaf, Institute Director and Leon Levy Professor and...
By radically reducing the amount of scientific research U.S. scientists can do, the president’s budget willfully ignores 400 years of thinking about innovation and knowledge—and seven decades of the United States’ advantage in the world. “It’s like we’ve forgotten we went through a scientific revolution,”...
When we think of infrastructure, we tend to think of the physical facilities and systems required for a country and its economy to function and thrive—roads, bridges, tunnels, airports, and railways as President Donald Trump specified in his February 28 speech to Congress. Maintaining our...