In the more than 4 years since our milestone rally in front of the Treasury, what has Science is Vital achieved?
While helping to secure a freeze of the public spend on science in the face of cuts elsewhere was no mean feat, we find it disappointing that none of the major party leaders in the UK have publicly committed to maintaining, let alone increasing, this level of funding. Four years on, and the apparent good economic news—more people in work, the fastest growing economy in the G7, wages growing faster than inflation—has not resulted in any good news for scientists still struggling with frozen budgets.
Against the odds, our scientists still manage to churn out world-leading research. Our per capita citation rate (a proxy for research quality) remains the best, beating even the Americans. But without a reversal of the real-term loss of funding, this cannot be sustained. There will come a point when publicly funded science in the UK is irreversibly damaged—with an inevitable concomitant loss of private sector investment.
The apathy of our elected representatives is consigning UK science to the compost heap of history—without the redeeming hope of useful fertilizer.
Does this worry you? Does it make you angry?
Come along to our AGM on Tuesday 3 February and find out how you can get involved. Bring your pitchforks and flaming torches.
Spaces are limited: book your place now! And of course, it’s free! Refreshments will be served and we’ll adjourn to a local pub afterwards.
Science is Vital Annual General Meeting
18.30, Tuesday 3 February 2015
Society of Biology, Charles Darwin House
12 Roger Street
WC1N 2JU London