New amendments to the HERB bill announced

On Friday, Jo Johnson, Minister for University, Science, Research and Innovation, announced a new set of amendments to be introduced in the Higher Education and Research Bill. The Bill is now approaching the report stage at the House of Lords.

 Professor Sir Robert Lechler PMedSci, President of the Academy of Medical Sciences commented:

 “These amendments and the Minister’s speech have addressed some of our concerns around the changes introduced by this bill. I was particularly pleased to see the enshrinement of the Haldane Principle into law. This move will help ensure research funding decisions are made at arm’s length from government, helping preserve the independence of academic research.

 “Medical charities and trusts contribute over £1 billion annually to the UK research funding landscape; so the Academy welcomes the announcement that experience of the charitable sector will be considered during appointment of UKRI board members.

 “The Academy of Medical Sciences has engaged with the government to share our expertise at many different stages as this Bill has evolved, and our briefings and submissions give our views in detail.

 “Over the coming months the Academy will continue to work with the Government to produce a Higher Education and Research Bill that will bring value and opportunities to UK research.”

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