26 June 2013 For immediate release
Professor Alan Ashworth, Chief Executive of The Institute of Cancer Research, London said:
“Given the significant cuts Government departments have seen across the board, the scientific community might be forgiven for breathing a sigh of relief that the science spend has in one sense been protected. Though it is important to recognise things could have been much worse, we need to remember that a freeze in the science budget at 4.6billion is a real-terms cut once we take into account inflation. It is hard to overstate the importance of investing in science, which has an impact on so many areas of our lives from the boost it gives the economy to the benefits it brings in the way we diagnose, treat and prevent disease. The gradual decline the UK is currently experiencing in science spend risks denying our economy a key source of growth, slowing scientific progress and eroding our world class scientific infrastructure. I would also remind the Government of the importance of its scientific spend for encouraging investment from the charity and private sectors.
“The increase in capital investment for scientific projects is welcome, although there is not yet enough detail to know what impact it will have. I am also very pleased to see that funding will continue for the Charity Research Support Fund, which makes sure that the public’s donations for medical research go much further. It is essential that all governments continue to regard science funding as a priority so organisations like The Institute of Cancer Research can continue to make world-class discoveries that deliver real benefits for the lives of patients.”