12 August 2009 --
Harold Varmus’s new book The Art and Politics of Science is a memoir which tells how, during his year of graduate studies in English literature at Harvard University, he discovered he was more drawn to medicine, and entered Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons. It tells of how this turning point led to his groundbreaking research that won him the 1989 Nobel prize in Physiology or Medicine, and that earned him many eminent positions, which include Director of the National Institutes of Health and President of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York.
Chapter 14 of Varmus’ book (entitled Global Science and Global Health) starts with a quote by Serageldin:
Science can help to feed the hungry, heal the sick, protect the environment, provide dignity in work and create space for the joy of self-expression. Yet ... lack of opportunity to master science and the new technologies will accentuate the divide between rich and poor -- Ismail Serageldin
Harold Varmus has recently been appointed by U.S. President Obama as co-chair to the President''s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. He has always been a champion of an open access for scientific papers. He is co-founder and chairman of the board of directors of the Public Library of Science, a non-profit open access publisher.