The notion of governments controlling the work of academics brings to mind the regimes of Stalin or much academic work in Communist China, where still the works of Mao Tse Tung, Deng Xiaoping et al are core to the curriculum for degree programmes. However there are equally benign interpretations, channelling funding into research into medicine, or even the ways in which to maximise the effectiveness of health campaigns. The prioritisation of the Big Society agenda has sparked fury according to an article published on the Guardian website yesterday. The key problem is because the agenda is largely in slogan form, it is far easier to design the questions when considering how to approach seeking cures for cancer than to consider what to ask about a largely nebulous concept. However, for academics this strikes of government interfering in the act of knowledge generation. The reaction is to ask how a government is allowing an "