Budget 2011: Osborne’s bank raid benefits science

A £100 million cash injection for four research campuses has been announced in today’s Budget.

March 23, 2011

George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, said the additional money had been found from the new levy on banks and would go to facilities that had been earmarked as priorities by the science and engineering research councils.

The centres receiving the investment are: the Babraham Research Campus, a biosciences facility in Cambridge; the Norwich Research Park for environmental and life sciences; the International Space Innovation Centre at Harwell in Oxfordshire; and the National Science and Innovation Campus in Daresbury, Cheshire.

The Campaign for Science and Engineering welcomed the announcement, but said the money had to be seen in the context of the government’s £1.4 billion cut to capital spending on science.

“The extra funding announced today could be a first step on the path to making science and engineering pivotal to growth. But labs across the country are going to be struggling to make ends meet following the cuts announced last year,” said Imran Khan, CaSE’s director.

Mr Osborne also announced greater tax breaks for small companies engaged in research, plans to fund 12 more vocational university technical colleges for 14- to 19-year-olds, and up to 50,000 extra apprenticeships.

Pam Tatlow, chief executive of the million+ group of post-1992 universities, said the apprenticeships were welcome, but suggested that the government could have used revenue from the bank levy to increase places at higher education institutions.

“Demand for places is running at record levels and the government says it is serious about tackling youth unemployment. The bank levy could have been invested in student places…to generate the high-value skills and innovation that our economy needs,” she said.

Sally Hunt, general secretary of the University and College Union, said: “Given the huge overall cut to the science capital budget, £100 million to be shared between four research centres is to be welcomed, but is hardly cause for celebration.”

simon.baker@tsleducation.com

You've reached your article limit

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 10 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Business Development Officer YORK ST JOHN UNIVERSITY
Lecturer in Linguistics YORK ST JOHN UNIVERSITY
Associate Professor/Professor EDINBURGH NAPIER UNIVERSITY

Most Commented

Brexit, EU referendum

Joanna Williams voted Leave, and has been left disappointed by the academy’s reaction to the EU referendum result

Elly Walton illustration (7 July 2016)

Researchers in the liberal arts seem to have made it their mission to communicate in the most obscure fashion, says Zachary Foster

Daniel Mitchell illustration (14 July 2016)

Frank Furedi says the mournful mood on campus and the disparagement and silencing of Leave supporters betray an isolated scholarly class

Michael Parkin illustration (7 July 2016)

Rising immigration-related costs and lack of employer support send an unwelcoming message to international staff, says Jason Danely

People walk past second hand books for sale

Shift may be evidence that researchers feel they are increasingly judged on citations and journal impact factors