Consider the following sentence:
The government wants to encourage understanding of science.
Now, "to encourage understanding of science" is a non-finite subordinate clause functioning as an object. What about "understanding of science"? Is that also a non-finite clause? Or is "understanding" considered to be a noun?
Learning is an easy process for some.
Here, is "learning" a noun or a non-finite subordinate clause functioning as the subject of the whole clause?
I'm inclined to say that "understanding" is a noun, whereas "learning" is a non-finite clause. However, I don't know what this intuition is based on.