The relationship between science and its place in governmental institutions is a topic that is often overlooked, but an important one to consider when assessing scientific progress within countries. The government plays a fundamental and crucial role in scientific developments, as the majority of funding for scientific research, multi-million dollar science facilities and all other laboratory equipment comes directly from the government. Governmental values, whether they follow a democratic ideology, communist ideology etc, are ultimately what control how science operates within an institution. But is there one governmental system or ideology that is more favorable with regards to the progress of science?

Governmental ideologies are heavily embedded into society, making it inevitable that they have a large influence on the scientific culture within the institution. For instance, a democratic system of government emphasizes ideals such as popular sovereignty, majority rule and participation in decision making. This type of government is bound to have a scientific culture that is not necessarily focused or narrow in its ambitions, but rather one that seeks to support the wide-ranging interests of the people. As a consequence of its attempt to support and consider the opinions of the people at large, the government is forced to simultaneously fund multiple projects that suit a variety of interests. While establishing and funding more scientific projects increases the scope and chances of a scientific breakthrough, there are some downsides to this system with regards to scientific progress. First, with limited economic resources, there is less funding and public attention directed towards each project. If there were to only be a few focused projects, the government would be able to offer more financial support for each scientific endeavor thereby promoting and strengthening its cause. Moreover, values such as popular sovereignty and majority rule make decision-making difficult. Having support from only some part of the population makes advancement of science hard to achieve. Such is the case with NASA, which is only only supported by some governmental leaders and a small portion of the population. Support for the company has weakened tremendously over the years and has ultimately led the company to battle a difficult fight with the government to sustain funds for its research.

A communist form of government, on the other hand, is largely focused on common goals with a sense of community responsibility and power sharing. Thus, a communist system is likely to promote a scientific culture that is very focused and goal-oriented. Instead of cultivating projects that meet the interests of the entire population, this system is more focused towards a common scientific goal. The system is advantageous for science because it ensures uninterrupted and successful progress, as resources and funding are mostly directed towards one/few initiatives. However, there are also some disadvantages to this system. For instance, investing all resources into one main project is quite limiting to the scope of scientific findings and to the true research potential. Moreover, a constrained scientific culture in which the entire population does not have a say, serves to benefit only a portion of the population and not the whole. This strays away from the ultimate purpose of science, which is to work towards the betterment of all of humanity.  

It is evident that governmental ideologies shape the ways in which science is viewed and practiced within institutions. Each system has its flaws and benefits with regards to the advancement of scientific progress. Thus, although it is difficult to achieve in a society highly guided by its ideological values, science should be viewed as an enterprise that is separate from the government and other outside influences. It is only then that science can achieve its ultimate purpose and potential.