Letter: Researchers routed 1

February 15, 2002

With the Higher Education Funding Council for England presiding over the biggest shift of resources in its history to the largest, richest universities, the role of the research councils needs revisiting (Letters, THES , February 8).

By restricting funding to 4, 5 and 5* departments, Hefce has removed the ladders from what was a meritocratic system. Small grant schemes of councils should be greatly expanded to fund individual applications of merit that will have no recourse to departmental funding.

Sam Whimster
Max Weber Studies
London Guildhall University

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