Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Seriously, we needed to research this?

Ok, so I'll freely admit that my own research is a bit esoteric, but then again, I doubt I'll ever require huge sums of money to complete my research--at any point in my career. That said, it really irritates me when people research the obvious, as this doctor did: Study Unveils Likely Cause of Mt. Everest Deaths. I mean, seriously? We needed to conduct a lengthy study of all the deaths of climbers on Everest from 1920 to 2006 to know that most of them likely died from a lack of oxygen, complicated by the extreme weather conditions present on Everest? Hell, I'm not a doctor, I'm not a mountain climber, and I've never been to the Himalayas, but you know what? I knew this without having to read a study published in the British Journal of Medicine. I ask my fellow Situationers, most of whom are also academics: did this really need to be researched?

4 comments:

Oxymoron said...

Depends how much the grant was.

I'd research the cause of thumb injuries among carpenters if I got paid enough.

Southpaw said...

I agree it seems pretty obvious. That said, I think the issue lies with how the news article is written. The article presumes that their deaths are heretofore unexplained rather than that the study examines the specific effects of those conditions.

The findings are somewhat interesting in that they find that lung issues are rare and that it is a brain issue. Disorientation over suffocation. Not earth-shattering mind you and perhaps not worth a huge grant....

p-duck said...

I'll never forget the dissertation title I saw at my brother's graduation that focused entirely on the shelf life of ostrich meat...

Having been a fan of the Discovery Channel's programs on Everest, I can understand the study a bit.

Supadiscomama said...

I'd like to research the effects of graduate school on the mental stability of grad students. My hypothesis is that it's bad.