Basque scientist Pedro Miguel Etxenike

Pedro Miguel Etxenike. (Photo: Ekain Vélez de Mendizabal / Euskonews)

Pedro Miguel Etxenike is a Basque scientist, Professor of Condensed Matter Physics whose views on science, research and many other areas of life are always extremely interesting. He was recently interviewed by Diario de Noticias de Navarra, a newspaper published in my hometown Pamplona, and I thought the material was so good that I should share it with the readers of my blog.

The article was published in Spanish (click here to read it), but I have translated some of his statements from that interview, which you can read below:

  • “The biggest outcome of knowledge is the increase in ignorance: science advances and creates new questions.”
  • “Our life today is longer and more human because of science.”
  • “There is only one way to do science well: doing it with those who do it well.”
  • “I prefer to be surpassed than to just be followed.”
  • “Bureaucracy goes against the creative spirit that must prevail in research.”
  • “We don’t have to do everything, but in what we choose to do, we must be among the best.”
  • “Every answered question ususally creates two or more new questions, and that is the best outcome of an investigation.”
  • “There is a neutral science, but the options on the use of science are not neutral.”
  • “I would not be comfortable without working and I would not be comfortable only working.”
  • “I consider the recognition I have had not only enough, but excessive.”

The interested reader can also access another excellent complete interview that Professor Etxenike gave to Euskonews in 2008, available in English.

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