Whether we consider research, art or study, we will see that in any type of intellectual human activities there are two possible impulses: a voluntary desire to reach the result, which is generally independent of any influence, and an order, which can be either paid for or simply imposed upon an individual involved in the activity. The latter type is often thought to be more important, as it provides not only the opportunity for the activity to be organized, but also for the intellectuals to earn their living. Personally I disagree with this opinion and believe that voluntary and independent research, study or any other creative activity are much more important and efficient.
To start with, unlike paid research, voluntary activities tend to be more objective. They are independent from financial influence of the ordering party and, thus, can interpret the acquired data freely without being afraid of whether the ordering party likes it or not.
Moreover, voluntary activities provide intellectuals with more freedom, as they are not limited by any deadlines. This can give them a possibility to plan their own schedule. Besides, voluntary activities can result in the invention of absolutely innovative technologies because the ideas and imagination of an artist or a researcher are not restricted by the official trends.
So, taking all the above mentioned into account, one may say that voluntary research, studies or creative activities are the roots of democracy, as they result in the creation of something truly original and independent from the influence of the funding sources, such as governments or big multinationals and are characterized by the novelty of thought.