Ed Miliband – 2021 Comments on the Advances Research and Invention Agency

The comments made by Ed Miliband, the Shadow Business Secretary, on 19 February 2021.

Labour has long called for investment in high ambition, high risk science. From artificial intelligence to quantum technologies and life sciences, the UK has long been at the forefront of cutting-edge research and development. Labour will continue to support and champion the work of our country’s scientists.

But Government must urgently clarify the mission and mandate of this new organisation, following strong engagement with the UK’s science base – those closest to the work. And it is important ARIA does not have a blanket exemption from FOI laws as has been reported, so taxpayers know how their money is being invested.

Many researchers have been hit hard during the crisis but have been excluded from government support, and there is still no clarity about what the science budget will be in just six weeks time and where it will be spent, leaving the industry in limbo. Funding for ARIA must therefore be accompanied by a multi-year roadmap for funding across the whole sector.