Scotland calls for adviser of its own

June 26, 1998

SCOTLAND's Royal Society of Edinburgh wants a chief scientific adviser for Scotland in post by the time the new Scottish parliament is set up.

The Garrick committee, the Scottish arm of the Dearing inquiry, recommended appointing a chief scientific adviser for Scotland, but the Scottish Office rejected this, saying it did not believe this was the best way to help Scottish research.

The RSE has now told the consultative steering group on how the Scottish parliament will work that more thought needs to be given to a scientific advisory system.

Peter Wilson, general secretary of the RSE, said: "It is essential there is a strong voice for Scottish science available to the Scottish parliament and the chief scientific adviser will be an important conduit between the scientific community and government."

Higher education institutions should be among the bodies who are given the chance to comment on and criticise proposed legislation, it urges. The parliament is likely to legislate on highly technical and complicated topics, which will need to be considered in detail by experts.

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