Cheers for UK science budget

After all the linkurl:wailing and gnashing of teeth;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/52939/ in the UK recently over science budget cuts, the government is in the good books again. Why? The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown, has vowed long term increases in funding in his latest (and probably last) linkurl:budget;http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/budget/budget_07/bud_bud07_index.cfm announcement. Broadly speaking, the budget includes a promise that total investment in the public sci

By | March 22, 2007

After all the linkurl:wailing and gnashing of teeth;http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/52939/ in the UK recently over science budget cuts, the government is in the good books again. Why? The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown, has vowed long term increases in funding in his latest (and probably last) linkurl:budget;http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/budget/budget_07/bud_bud07_index.cfm announcement. Broadly speaking, the budget includes a promise that total investment in the public science base will rise by 2.5 per cent in real terms every year over the period of the Comprehensive Spending Review, which runs from 2008 to 2011. Science would also benefit from an increase in allocations to the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) which will support collaborative research and development with businesses. Cue cheers all round: "It is good news to see the Government highlighting the importance of science to the future of the UK's economy," said Martin Rees of the Royal Society. "It is wonderful news that the Chancellor has given such a positive message of support for the UK research base," said Ian Diamond for Research Councils UK. The Research Councils, which had borne the brunt of a short-term cut this year, also welcomed news that they will be able to draw down End-Year-Flexibility in 2007-08. "This reduces uncertainty in the short term, and will enable Research Councils to meet their commitments," RCUK said in a statement. There was also an announcement in the budget that the tax credit for research and development would be increased. "If the UK's economy is to succeed in the coming years and decades, we need to ensure that this country is seen by science and engineering-based businesses as an attractive and competitive place to come," said Peter Cotgreave of the Campaign for Science and Engineering.

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