course, South Africa. The University of Dar es Salaam has been one of the first to get some of that bandwidth connectivity, and I think Kenyatta University and several in the Nairobi area have as well. Those become interesting places to think about hosting data centers as the infrastructure gets built up around the rest of the country.
PARTICIPANT: We heard in some of the presentations yesterday and today that at least one of the barriers to sharing data are the lack of incentives and motivation from scientists. Professor Carlson, you articulated very nicely some suggestions for changing professional institutional structures to get scientists to share data, but in my field in global health and public health, the incentives are not enough. You cannot just have carrots. You have to have sticks. For example, the NIH, Canada, a lot of public funders, and even private funders in my home country require submission of data-sharing plans, but there is not that follow-up or at least a robust system of enforcement. I was wondering what the panel thinks about having something like sticks and what those sticks might look like. If incentives are not enough to motivate data sharing, what should the penalties look like? Is that a good idea?
DR. CARLSON: I completely agree. If you look at the regulatory environment of the funding agencies and talk to the directors of those funding agencies, most of them would say, “Yes, we have those sticks in place. If scientists want to come back to us for a renewal of their grant, it already says in the grant award they must have a data plan and provide their data to a center.” The problem is not the lack of the regulations. The problem is that at the program manager level, there is no enforcement. I can say this honestly without listing any country. I have been into a research council where the director said, “We have in place procedures so that our investigators have to provide their data in order to get a renewal. However, the program managers have no idea if any of their principal investigators have provided that data. They are not set up to track it. They have no mechanism, and there is no incentive to track it.” It is actually a culture within the agencies. The agencies already have the written regulations, but the agency culture has to change.
DR. COLLIER: I think that you can do some things with sticks, but if you did the enforcement, where would these people put their information? How would it be sustained? Do we have the infrastructure in any country to deal with that? Who do we hold accountable? Is it the institution? Is it the investigator? What if the investigator dies? What if the institution goes bankrupt? We do not have a real plan for how we are going to do this. I think that you can push, but it is going to take pushing in other places and providing some solutions as to how we are actually going to manage that information, where it is going to be, and how we are actually going to access it.
PARTICIPANT: I am wondering if the panel would be willing to address two issues that are enormously hindering, not only to data sharing but also to general science development in emerging economies. One of them is taking again what Michael was saying about cellular telephony as well as broadband availability. He mentioned a number of individuals, and we also know that the first or second richest man in the world is a Mexican who controls telecommunications throughout the continent. What we have experienced is that telecommunications in all of South America are enormously more expensive than they are for comparable services in the United States. That is one of the issues.
The other one is somewhat related, although it is strictly applied to the biological sciences, and that is the issue of intellectual property rights (IPR), either for therapeutic agents or for vaccine agents. There are a variety of agents that can be produced through recombinant technologies at extraordinarily low cost compared to the price at which they are available commercially in Africa and Southeast Asia. There is quite a bit of controversy regarding the prudence or the rationale for proceeding with producing the necessary agents regardless of IPR. Two common issues link these two: one is enormous greed, and the second is corruption. Would the panel be willing to address that?