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Thread: Who sets the standards? Why is it so? Should it be different?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array Lark's Avatar
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    Jun 2009

    Default Who sets the standards? Why is it so? Should it be different?

    Think of any service that there's both a public and private equivalent which of them sets the standard? Why is this so? Should it be different?

    I dont mind if your post is entirely theoretical, ie this is how it is because [insert theorising about human nature here] or [insert theorising about economy or culture here], although if it is say so, I'd be more interested if anyone has any direct experience themselves to support their views though or how they reached them or if they've ever had their challenged by reality.

  2. #2
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    Mar 2009


    The more successful on "sets the standard" , so to speak.

    As long as we assume:
    -both organizations are under the same influence and laws - gov't or private
    -both organizations impose the same restrictions

    I sometimes think that salaries of gov't leaders should be raised to manage those of the top CEOs. That way when the brightest will look compare gov't and private industries at job application time, monetary compensation will be less of a factor than it is today.

    They say privatize the gov't corporations...I say why not best of both worlds? A gov't employee's motivation, passion, and dedication with the privatized compensation package. Wall Street is full of physicist and engineers. Why isn't the government? Its solving the same kinds of problems, just on a different scale.

    WHY NOT!!!?

  3. #3
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    Sep 2010


    The standards are the standards for a reason. If there wasn't a reason...then there wouldn't be standards to begin with.
    The reason why the standards exist, I'd hope, at least in principle, should have the most bearing on who gets to set the standards to begin with..for if their exists no reason "why"..then, similarly, there shouldn't exist any standards. Or, the purpose of standards is to standardize..which is circular. But standards exist, and not merely to exist (which is illogical), and therefore, so does a reason "why"...(hopefully..)
    The people who have an answer to the question of "why", I think, set the standards. In real time talk: "Why do humans exist? Because...blah blah blah"--> a standard.
    everyone has a reason "why", even if unconsciously.

    So, the answer, it seems..
    is everyone.

    But whose standards take priority when two "standards" are in direct opposition to one another? Historically, I think, it's been who ever wanted it more. So, ultimately, who sets the standards?
    Those who have felt (or feel) they have to...that to do otherwise is a lesser way of being.

  4. #4
    lab rat extraordinaire Array CrystalViolet's Avatar
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    Oct 2008
    5w4 sx/sp


    I can only think of my experience in Medical labs, where there is both private and government models. There is a board, which is an independent entity, which sets the practicing standards. The standards are officially the same, although in Australia, the reality is quite different. The government labs are held to a higher standard. Even the most cash strapped government lab is held to that higher standard. The private labs can vary, ultimately though, it's about the bottom dollar in most cases.
    There are huge differences, I'm not even sure where to start. I've worked in both area, although I prefer working in government labs. I don't tend to lie awake at night, worrying that I may have unintentionally killed some one because I was used a less than ideal method, due the managers being too cheap to cough out for pre-made reagents. (okay extreme scenario - but I did worry working in certain private labs that I was reporting inaccurate results because they were too cheap to pay for a servicing of our analyzers.)
    Do I think there should be more government intervention in the private sector? YES.
    Why? Because I think the training is shoddy, they hire people off the street with next to no prior knowledge. Short cuts are taken which aren't always scientifically sound. I could go on and on. The problems are huge. This isn't every private company. I have worked for a good private company that didn't necessarily put the dollar above reliable results. It's so reliant on the business managers have good solid ethics though. It kinda horrifies me how little government intervention there is. (I've seen people try though.)
    feel free to ask questions, I'll answer as best I can. I don't know where to start, because it's a kinda a huge question.
    Currently submerged under an avalanche of books and paper work. I may come back up for air from time to time.
    Real life awaits and she is a demanding mistress.

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