Cuts 'threaten vital research'
Scientific research that "touches people's lives" could be lost as a result of Government cuts to funding, leading universities warned today.
Reduced budgets will undermine progress made in science, health and technology over the last 20 years and could also lead to a brain-drain of talent, according to academics.
Business Secretary Vince Cable has said the Government will cut its £6 billion-a-year research budget and strip out "mediocrity", with only top-flight work attracting funding.
Citing numerous "tangible" examples such as stem cell success in areas including blindness and trachea transplants and 3D technology for heart disease, five university heads spoke out at a press briefing to argue against the proposed cuts.
Professor Malcolm Grant, President and Provost of University College London, said: "This is not abstract research.
"This is research that touches people's lives.
"This is what our universities in this country are doing today.
"This is what we fear we will not be doing tomorrow in the event that we fail to convey to the public and to our political leaders what it is that university research achieves."
Prof Grant, who questioned what economic case for long-term growth would conclude that research was not relevant, added: "I think one of the greatest risks is that the investment in science and research that has occurred in the last two decades runs a very serious risk of being squandered if we are unable to maintain the intensity of research that we have achieved and the efficiency with which we do it then we are about to lose a national asset of great importance."
- 2 The man who filmed the Freddie Gray video has been arrested at gunpoint
- 4 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
General Election 2015: Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind as he casts a line to the disaffected of Grimsby
The man who filmed the Freddie Gray video has been arrested at gunpoint
Indonesia executions: Death row British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford will refuse to wear a blindfold when she faces firing squad
Oxygen-starved 'dead zones' with no marine life up to 100-miles long discovered in the Atlantic Ocean
Russian warships accused of 'chasing away' Swedish vessel to prevent Baltic States from achieving energy independence
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: SNP and its activists 'openly racist' towards the English, Farage says
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Digital Marketing Cons...
£16640 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Assistant Stores Keeper is r...
£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...
£17000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Developer required to join a bu...