A decade ago we saw the closure of a series of physics departments, and attrition within the survivors continues. Now it seems to be the turn of chemistry.
This cannot be good for a modern country aspiring to maintain an edge in the face of strong and rapidly emerging economies. The solution requires the sort of joined-up thinking, and associated action, that governments on occasion seem to find so difficult.
One immediate necessity is to conserve those science departments we still have. One surely has to redistribute resources in a more sensible way.
These subjects get a little over 40 per cent of the funding allocation per student provided for the clinical sciences: 65 per cent would be more realistic.
Bob Newport Canterbury University