Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Needed Framework for Cures

Gillian Tett's thought-provoking article in the FT points to a looming problem--the public could be losing confidence in "Big Data"-ish strategies, even when they have nothing to do with the National Security Agency.

In particular wide-scale biomedical research will be caught in the downdraft of public anxiety over spying and privacy.

It's an interesting point, and Tett cites two possible solutions: private data centers, in which the data is anonymized, and popular subscription campaigns.

Both are worthy suggestions, but it's clear that nothing will work amidst public cynicism, skepticism, and even hostility.

It's going to take political leadership--backed up by leadership from other sectors across all of society--to reinstill public confidence.

That is, it's going to take a framework, not unlike that which the federal government created around infrastructure projects, such as canals and railroads, in the 19th century.  Or around the telephone, television, and Internet networks of the 20th century. 

1 comment:

  1. If we run the Genomic Revelation as a non-profit entity headed by a Priest, Rabbi and a Mulla, am pretty sure they can keep the "seal of confession" (anonymized). Of course all would have to possess science degrees besides ordinations. Maybe the AMA can become such a peoples movement and support such a non-profit entity.

    You are right, this wont happen for a while, maybe after we elect a new President. Am pretty sure the next "guy" will have to win the "Who Do You Trust" award of the American People to be elected because the current crop of Hill People have been doing too much weaning on K Street.