Value of science and education


Education as such is socially very valuable. Education enables people to take part in society. Social value of science and education arises also from the employment effect both directly and indirectly. Direct employers are, for example, schools, universities and research institutes. The number of indirect employers is vast. Many private and governmental enterprises use the outcomes of science in their field of work.


Science and education have been considered to have an intrinsic value. Science has been trying to figure out the nature of the world we live in for thousands of years. The interest towards one’s own surroundings is a universal phenomenon in humans.


The economic value of science and education for society is difficult to measure comprehensively because of the multitude of its effects on various levels, in primary education, universities, research institutes and enterprises both directly and indirectly.

One indicator for the economic value of science can be measured by the extent of the state funding for research. In 1990–2012 the state funding of research and development has increased nearly threefold. In 2012 it was 2.1 billion euros.


The health value of science and education can be observed from many angles. The magnitude of medicine and health care research is cosiderable in Finland, and it aims to find new cures or refine existing ones for old and new diseases. The study of health care can be considered more widely. For example, some research is ongoing of the positive health impacts of spending time in nature.

Education itself can be considered healthy. Some studies suggest that education has a positive link to health and welfare.


Tutkimus- ja kehittämisrahoitus valtion talousarviossa. Tilastokeskus / The Official Statistics of Finland. [In Finnish]

Recreational Use of Forests. Finnish Forest Research Institutes.

Koulutus. Terveyden ja hyvinvoinnin laitos / National institute for health and welfare. [In Finnish]


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