Why we need children in our offices and labs and research fields

An article in the New York Times related how the offhand query of a young graduate student has spurred seasoned medical researchers on viruses to make significant advances into understanding Zika. Without the student’s suggestion, the experts would still be stymied over finding a way forward in the kind of foundational research vital to eventually stemming this pernicious virus. How is possible that a young and curious dilettante can take an interest in a virus about which he knows next to nothing, and learn just enough to make what turns out to be a remarkably penetrating and fruitful suggestion? That’s how the young among us roll. That’s what they do best. My question is: What if all our labs and research fields, indeed all our professional offices, were as a…


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