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Maharey's plans won't help NZ science

Dr Paul Hutchison National Party Research, Science & Technology Spokesman

4 May 2006

Maharey's plans won't help NZ science

Labour's plans to decrease contestability in science funding will make New Zealand less competitive with the rest of the world, says National's Research, Science and Technology spokesman, Dr Paul Hutchison.

"Steve Maharey has introduced highly competitive funding into universities," says Dr Hutchison.

"Why is he now planning to do the opposite for Crown Research Institutes?

"Both Mr Maharey and his colleague Trevor Mallard have said that contestable funding moves the emphasis to quality over quantity. It appears they have not taken their own advice.

"The Minister has provided no hard evidence that his proposed changes will work, and most scientific and economic literature strongly supports contestable funding.

"Government investment in science, expressed as a percentage of GDP, has gone down in the past six years, and now the Minister is moving to reduce our competitiveness as well," says Dr Hutchison.

ENDS

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