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Research England put politicians’ interests ahead of free speech, says EDI lead in resignation letter

BMJ 2024; 385 doi: (Published 06 June 2024) Cite this as: BMJ 2024;385:q1248
  1. Bryan Christie
  1. Edinburgh

Research England has been accused of being more interested in “mollifying politicians and their whims” than defending academic freedom in a scathing resignation letter from the chair of its advisory group on equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI).

Kamna Patel, associate professor of development studies at University College London, was one of two academics in the EDI group named by Michelle Donelan, minister for science, innovation, and technology, in October last year for their comments on social media, which the minister claimed expressed sympathy for Hamas.

Donelan called on Research England’s parent body, UK Research and Innovation, to suspend the advisory group and investigate the …

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