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Science budget ‘not my responsibility’, says Walport

Mark Walport, the UK’s chief scientific adviser, has said that although he is “concerned” about potential cuts to the ring-fenced science budget, it is ultimately not his area of responsibility.

Walport was speaking in front of the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee on 4 December as part of a hearing on the Government Office for Science’s annual review 2012-13. He was responding to a question by committee chairman Andrew Miller about whether he was worried about recent reports that there could be a cut to the research budget or cuts to science in other government departments.

“Obviously I am concerned to make sure that science infrastructure is as strong as it possibly could be. I have a general concern but don’t have a specific responsibility for the budget,” Walport told the committee. He added that he did have a “general role in terms of advocacy within government for science and for science budget”.

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