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Probably many of you have heard about a dinosaur nicknamed Antonio.
It is a complete and articulated skeleton of a primitive hadrosaurian from
the Upper Santonian (85 m.y.a.) of NE Italy. I was the field work director
when it was excavated in 1998/99. After years, finally I have been allowed
to study that specimens and others found in the same site. I applied a
grant of 863 USD to the Jurassic Foundation to support my expenses (travels
and a Wood's lamp).
This morning I have found the following message in my e-mail box:
<<Dear Dr. Dalla Vecchia:
Thank you very much for submitting a research grant proposal to the
Jurassic Foundation. We received numerous excellent proposals from
students and researchers around the world, far in excess of the number
we were able to fund. Given this abundance of proposals and the limited
potential for funding, the committee decided to direct funding toward:
1) graduate students; and 2) international researchers who otherwise
might not be able to access funds. Even within these categories,
however, we were able to fund only a portion of the applicants. I am
sorry to inform you that your proposal was not selected for funding.
Nonetheless, I sincerely thank you once again for your submission, and I
wish you continued success in your academic and professional pursuits.
Scott D. Sampson, Ph.D.
President, Jurassic Foundation>>
On one side I am happy. This means that somewhere in the world many
specimens more important and worth of a sponsoring than a complete and
articulated basal hadrosaurian of Santonian age that lived in an island in
the ocean between Eurasia and Afroarabia, are going to be studied and
On the other side, not only I am not retributed at all to study Antonio,
but, if I want to do it, I must pay by my own all the expenses.
What would you do if you were in my position?
Fabio M. Dalla Vecchia, Ph.D.