Labour relaunches Council for Science & Technology

Labour relaunches Council for Science & Technology
Richard Ball The government has relaunched its Council for Science and Technology, admitting the original group failed to achieve its objectives. Stressing that science is crucial to British industry’s future, Tony Blair relaunched the council during a tour of the Science Museum. First set up in 1993, the council aimed to establish the country’s needs in terms of science and technology. Recently it has faced criticism for being secretive and not having a well defined remit. “One of the main changes is the work is going to be open,” said a DTI spokesperson. During the reorganisation of the UK’s research councils some two years ago, the council was critical of the Tory government’s plans. This was not known about until some time later. “The fact that the council’s advice to government was not open was some cause for concern,” the DTI said. Described as the premier advisory body for science, engineering and technology, the reformed council has 14 members from industry, academia and the City. They include Professor Sir Alec Broers, formally with IBM and professor of electrical engineering at Cambridge, and David Potter, Psion’s chief executive. Its responsibilities are to look at the medium and long term and advise the Prime Minister on strategic policies for science and technology in the UK. The council will examine the country’s performance and recommend methods of improvement.


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