Science and Technology Committee asks: where is additional £300 million for mathematics?

As many members will know, in January 2020 the government and UKRI announced £300 million in additional funding for mathematical sciences, of which £124 million has been allocated so far. In March of this year, via the Protect Pure Maths campaign, the UK’s mathematical societies called for the £300 million to be honoured.

At a Science and Technology Committee hearing held on 15 June, Professor Dame Ottoline Laser (Chief Executive of UKRI) and George Freeman MP (Minister for Science, Research and Innovation, Department for BEIS) were asked about the status of the £300 million. Dame Ottoline informed the Committee that the majority of the funding had still not been received.

Greg Clark MP, Chair of the S&T Committee, noted his concern at this development and questioned whether the government had deprioritised mathematics, in contradiction to its statement made in 2020 in support of the discipline. Graham Stringer MP, a member of the Committee, also asked for reassurance that the £300 million was still new money that will be allocated. The minister agreed to discuss the matter further with Dame Ottoline and return to the Committee with a detailed answer.

You can watch the full session at https://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/9a385788-0ba1-462d-96ed-57c346a42b33. The discussion on the £300 million is held from 12:01 to 12:10.

The Society is very pleased that the S&T Committee recognises the importance of this funding to mathematics, and is delighted to be part of the Protect Pure Maths Campaign that has helped highlight this issue.

 

Last updated 16 June 2022