Scientists respond to UK business secretary’s warning of cuts in research funding

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: (Published 10 September 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c4983
  1. Geoff Watts
  1. 1London

    A speech on science, research, and innovation given on 8 September at Queen Mary, University of London, by the UK business secretary, Vince Cable, has prompted a flurry of worried responses from scientists and their representative bodies.

    The context of Mr Cable’s speech was the much trailed round of forthcoming cuts in government spending. The speech itself was part hymn of praise for the achievements of British science, part warning. Its theme: can we achieve more with less?

    Having begun by declaring that “my colleagues, including at the Treasury, value the contribution of UK science,” Mr Cable went on to rehearse the familiar reasons for protecting science from the economic scythe.

    “Scientific inquiry,” he said, “like the arts, …

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