In times of an economic crisis, in which area should governments reduce its spending?
2. Scientific research
3. Parks and public gardens.
During an economic crisis, governments face difficult choices of monetary allocation with reduced budgets. In this challenging time, it is of vital importance for policy-makers to recognize the effectiveness of policy-making on certain social services or programs such as arts, scientific research and park and public gardens. If a choice has to be made, in my opinion, the government should reduce its spending on arts.
To begin with, in times of an economic crisis, it is significant for policy-makers to recognize the necessity of investing in scientific research because it exerts a far-reaching effect. If the financial crisis leads to substantial cuts in funding for scientific research by governments, it will be difficult to muster investment for a public good, like clean air, or for extremely risky initiatives, such as novel approaches to new antibiotic drugs, or in areas where the outcome is uncertain. As a matter of fact, technological innovation, biomedical breakthroughs, and tackling pressing environmental issues all require sustained scientific development, from basic discovery to final application. Investing in research is investing in the future, and it requires a long-term commitment to the accumulation of knowledge, the testing of basic principles, and the translation of these discoveries into practical applications that impact everyday life. Consequently, governments ought to attach more importance to the scientific studies so as to develop world class research base and conduct crucial scientific projects.
Furthermore, funding for parks and public gardens provides an opportunity for people to engage in physical activities, which is considerably beneficial to health. Nowadays, due to the sedentary lifestyle and unhealthy eating diet, overweight and obesity are epidemic problems across the world, and related conditions are on the rise. A primary focus of attention is providing environment where people can be physically active. Parks offer such an opportunity. In addition, health studies have shown that people who do regular exercise get a range of benefits when they are in natural settings, like parks and public gardens. These benefits include reduced risk of premature death; reduced risk of heart disease, hypertension, cancer; improved maintenance of muscle strength; weight loss and favorable redistribution of body fat; improved physical functioning. Therefore, when governments allocate fiscal spending on parks such as well-designed and well-maintained paths as well as attractive scenery, people can substantially improve their health and quality of life by doing moderate amounts of physical activity in their daily lives.
Undeniably, if governments pay more attention to investment in art, people can enrich inner world as a diverse and productive cultural environment can provide the spirit and important intangible values. However, in times of crisis, people usually lay emphasis on basic needs instead of spiritual needs. As a result, the importance of material comforts outweighs that of nourishment for the mind and it does not mean that people’s quality of life will be dramatically affected if governments cut budget on art and provide less financial support on art institutions. In a sense, it will not directly influence people’s life at least in a short term because people rarely need to satisfy their aesthetic needs everyday. Therefore, compared with scientific research and park and public gardens, art is least associated with people’s daily life and it needs less concern.
From what has been discussed above, scientific studies serve the common interest of the entire human race and doing exercise in parks and public gardens constitutes an indispensable part of daily life. It is more applicable and reasonable to cut down spending on art in the times of an economic crisis.