I am an academic. Just like an MP, I have to spend money in order to do my job properly. However, to be allowed to 'incur expenses', I have to apply in the Science and Engineering Research Council lottery, where only one in five grants rated as 'at the forefront of UK and world science' is funded. If I fail to attract about pounds 30,000 a year of research income, then not only am I unable to do the research part of my job, but the income of my department falls as well.
As with schoolteachers, nurses, doctors and others, I would have no trouble in justifying a 40 per cent increase in the expenditure incurred in my work. It would make my life less fraught and might make me feel less bitter about the 2 per cent reduction in my pay deemed appropriate by the Government.
MICHAEL de PODESTA
University of London
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- University Of The Arts London