[…] How to Read a Scientific Paper: A Guide for Non-Scientists — excellent advice. 1. Read the introduction (not the abstract). 2. Identify the BIG QUESTION. 3. Summarize the background in five sentences. 4. Identify the SPECIFIC QUESTION(S). 5. Identify the approach. 6. Draw a diagram for experiments, showing methods. 7. Summarize results from each experiment. 8. Do results answer the SPECIFIC QUESTION(S). 9. Read conclusion/discussion/interpretation section. 10. Now, read the abstract. 11. What do other researchers say about this paper? […]
Although we appreciate the need to protect the intellectual property rights that have spurred the investments into research and development that have led to agritech’s successes, we also believe food safety and environmental protection depend on making plant products available to regular scientific scrutiny. Agricultural technology companies should therefore immediately remove the restriction on research from their end-user agreements. Going forward, the EPA should also require, as a condition of approving the sale of new seeds, that independent researchers have unfettered access to all products currently on the market. The agricultural revolution is too important to keep locked behind closed doors.