Google has discovered itself in the middle of a controversy related to paid-policy study. A non-profit watchdog has stated in its new report that the financial support of the tech giant for academics may have inclined policymakers uninformed of the role of the company.
Google lawyers and lobbyists showed Google-funded study to the White House, journalists, and Congress. It also included agency regulators investigating its behavior, such as the Federal Trade Commission. This was done without revealing the funding, claimed Campaign for Accountability last week in its report.
“For instance, Eric Schmidt, former Chief Executive of Google, mentioned that a Google-funded author answers to Congress to support his argument that his firm was not a domination. He did not cite that Google had compensated for the paper,” the report stated.
Reacting to the report, Google referred it as extremely misleading.
Campaign for Accountability claimed that it verified 329 research papers posted in the period from 2005 to 2017. These include research papers based public policy issues that were of interest to Google in some or the other way and were funded by the firm.
Google-funded surveys are posted by a wide range of sources, and regularly blur the line between paid advocacy and academic research, the report titled “Google Academics Inc.” claimed.
“Google utilizes its huge power and wealth to make an effort to pressure policymakers at starting level. At least regulators must be alert that the supposedly independent academic and legal work on which they depend has been given by Google to them,” said Executive Director of Campaign for Accountability, Daniel Stevens.
“Google-funded surveys should reveal the source of their financial support to make sure that their work is calculated in context. The government makes verdict that will be advantageous to not just Google stockholders and employees, but all Americans,” Stevens stated.
Reports given financial support by the company have been written by economists and academics coming from some of the best law universities and schools of the U.S. These include Harvard, Stanford, and MIT, as well as most of the high-status universities in Europe comprising Edinburgh, Oxford, and the Berlin School of Economics. This was stated by Campaign for Accountability in the end.