Universities forgotten as research budgets cut

March 21, 2007 8:00 AM

David Howarth, MP for Cambridge, has criticised the Department of Trade and Industry for failing to consider how cuts to research budgets would affect universities.

The Department of Trade and Industry recently announced cuts of £68million to this year's research council budgets in order to cover deficits in other parts of the Department. Mr. Howarth asked Trade and Industry Minister Malcolm Wicks whether he had considered how this would affect universities before making the decision.

Mr. Howarth commented:

"The DTI has suddenly cut £68million from research budgets in order to make up for overspends in other areas. Many of our universities, including Cambridge, rely heavily on the income that research councils provide and so I'm very worried about the effects of this budget cut.

David Howarth looking into a microscope

David Howarth MP

"Malcolm Wicks has admitted that although he consulted with the research councils before making the cut, he made no assessment of the likely impact on universities. This is just not good enough. Universities are being punished because of overspending on entirely unrelated Government activities. This is why research councils should be part of the Department of Education, not the DTI."

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