Scienceogram UK

Making sense of science spending

Government departments slash research

The government has come under renewed pressure this week over its swingeing cuts to departmental research and development, shown by the Science, Engineering and Technology statistics released last year.

The cuts have been highlighted by articles in the Financial Times, Research Fortnight and a follow-up blog post from the Campaign for Science and Engineering (CaSE). Scienceogram produced the following graph, showing the disproportionate cuts to departmental R&D when compared to cuts to overall budgets in those departments.

Departmental research spending cuts, 2010–11 vs 2011–12

‘It’s difficult to marry the Chancellor’s enthusiasm for science…with the severe pressure on departmental R&D both through budget cuts and consideration of the future of our national research institutes,’ CaSE Director Dr Sarah Main told Research Fortnight.

Freedom of Information requests by CaSE also showed that these cuts to R&D had occurred without any of the departments consulting the Treasury or the government chief scientist, contravening official guidelines.

We at Scienceogram also responded to the SET Statistics when they were released last year.

Categories: CaSEgovernment statisticsmediapolitics


  1. UK science funding drops below 0.5% of GDP - Scienceogram UK

    […] This graph shows investment in research across the G8 since 1996, and is a stark illustration of the UK’s lacklustre international performance when it comes to investing in science. Having ranked near the bottom of the pack throughout, the decline since 2009 has taken the UK to unprecedented lows. This is the result of the steady erosion of the science budget by inflation after being frozen in cash terms in 2010, cuts in capital expenditure, and significant reductions in departmental spending on research. […]

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