The number of researchers has exploded When you have more researchers, it’s harder to judge them directly on their process or quality of thinking. Instead, because People create proxy games for long term or hard-to-measure games there are a ton of academic proxy games: number of peer-reviewed papers, citations, prizes etc. as proxy games for research quality. §Academia Constraints. For each of these, there is an argument why they get in the way of doing good research. In the extreme case, standardized grant application processes could push the world towards the Szilard point.
Separately, the proxy games can also be explained by universities being run by administrators who themselves are not researchers. People who have done a thing should be in charge of a thing. The