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Former No 10 science adviser warns of challenges for Aria

James Phillips says funding agency must be protected from Treasury ‘meddling’

The Advanced Research and Invention Agency’s “small budget” and micromanagement from government could pose future challenges for the nascent £800 million funder, a former science adviser to Number 10 has warned.

James Phillips, who was special adviser to former prime minister Boris Johnson between April 2020 and September 2022, said Aria “could not be in better hands”, following the appointments of its founding chief executive Ilan Gur and chair Matt Clifford last year.

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