• Question: How important (in your opinion) is your job to the rest of the world?

    Asked by harrisgr04 to Amelia, Jim, Liz, Prateek, Richard on 15 Jun 2011.
    • Photo: Prateek Buch

      Prateek Buch answered on 14 Jun 2011:

      we’d all love to think that we’re changing the world, and in some small way we are 🙂

      there are millions of people worldwide with disorders that cause blindness – and although my own work focuses on treating just two or three forms inherited retinal degeneration, I’d hope that the techniques and ideas we use could be of benefit to many patients losing their sight across the world for all sorts of reasons.

    • Photo: Jim Caryl

      Jim Caryl answered on 14 Jun 2011:

      Yes, like Prateek, I think we would all like to make a difference in the world, and hope that our job is an important one.

      Whilst I work on a particularly important bacteria that causes millions of infections and deaths worldwide each year, my contribution is one that will hopefully provide more information about what types of drugs to treat this bacteria with, and more importantly, what drugs not to treat them with. There are other scientists working in this areas too, so our combined efforts will have a greater effect than me working alone.

    • Photo: Lizzard O'Day

      Lizzard O'Day answered on 14 Jun 2011:

      The best part about science is that it’s truly international. I learn from colleagues all over the world and I hope one day my work can help them too. As a scientific community we all work together, learning from each others mistakes and successes to keep science moving forward. And the discoveries scientists make is extremely important for the rest of the world- from ipods to medicine it all originated in the science world. woo! Go science!

    • Photo: Richard Badge

      Richard Badge answered on 14 Jun 2011:

      I think that science has made a huge contribution to the modern world – almost everything about our daily lives has been transformed by science – the food we eat, the clothes we wear, how we communicate and how long we live… In that way being a scientist is a pretty important.

      But its important to remember very few of these things were achieved by one scientist – science is a team game and needs lots of people to keep chippng away at their own questions…

      On a day to day basis nobody “needs” a scientist like they need a paramedic or a builder, but over the years the efforts of lots of scientists add up to a lot progress!

    • Photo: Amelia Markey

      Amelia Markey answered on 15 Jun 2011:

      Personally I think scientist are really important (but being one I would think that 😉 )

      Scientists and research have lead to the production of lots of things you take for granted every day. Like Richard said food, clothes, communication but also medicine we take if we’re ill, tests to tell if you are ill in the first place and what is the best way to treat you, ways to stop us becoming ill (clean water, hygiene etc) and ways generate energy to name but a few.

      As for my particular research, who knows. I’d like to think that my research will be carried on after I’ve finished and maybe my device could be developed into a real product which would help the other scientist who work on DNA to have a really good source of DNA to work from. Lots of effort goes into making sure the work we do has a big “impact” this means that not only is it interesting but that it is important and actually makes a difference to science/medicine.