Organisation and Scientific Discovery John Hurley Professor of Organisational Psychology at Dublin City University, Ireland What factors other than creativity lead to discoveries in science? Of the five million scientists worldwide, few are directly involved in significant discovery. It is perhaps surprising that no models or guidelines exist for people responsible for scientific research projects that are directed towards discovery. They and their colleagues would no doubt welcome help in structuring and managing their exploration. This book seeks a way forward. Research into the creative process has always far exceeded the attention given to organisational factors. Yet resources such as money, colleagues, technicians, library and equipment all have a major bearing on the likelihood of discovery. In this revealing study, the author worked with 16 Nobel laureates, each completing two interviews and four questionnaires on the subject of organisation. Drawing on his background in organisational psychology, the author here interprets and explores the results. Professor Hurley shows how the chances of discovery can be increased, contributing to the quality of future scientific research. He proposes a model of the workings of research organisations and groups – to guide experimental research, to test the theory and to establish the parameters of organisation in relation to discovery. A major theme of the book is that organisations play a central role in facilitating or inhibiting discovery in science. The contribution to discovery in science of such organisational matters as the selection of scientists, their development and training, scientific leadership, management and supervision are all explored in this book, and important questions raised about the relationship between individual scientists and the laboratories in which they work.
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