The British Academy responds to new government plans for science and research

21 Jun 2021

The British Academy has responded to the government’s new science and research plans which aim to help the UK become a "global science superpower" and put research at the heart of decision-making.

In response to the announcement, Hetan Shah, Chief Executive of the British Academy, said:

"The British Academy welcomes the government's plans for science and research, which include the establishment of a National Science and Technology Council to be chaired by the Prime Minister. This is a positive step which will help to leverage wider strategic benefits from the UK's research base to tackle issues such as societal wellbeing, climate security and national growth.

"However, it is vital that the proposed infrastructure includes the whole research base, not just ‘science and technology’. It is not just about developing new technologies as solutions to our challenges, we also need to enable their adoption and integration, and insights from the SHAPE disciplines – the social sciences, humanities and the arts – are crucial to this. We have seen this most recently in the way that science gave us a vaccine, but it was the social sciences and humanities which helped us to understand the roots of vaccine hesitancy and how to tackle this.

"We look forward to working with the government and wider research community to seize this opportunity to position research and development as a key route towards securing a positive and prosperous future."

Contact the press office

For further information contact the Press Office on press@thebritishacademy.ac.uk  / 020 7969 5273 / 07500 010 432.

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