Feeds

Britain gets shiny new science minister

Fresh from changing the climate in Defra

Top three mobile application threats

Ian Pearson has been named as the new minister in charge of science in the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS).

The MP for Dudley South comes to the role from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs where he was minister of state for climate change and the environment. He replaces Malcolm Wicks who oversaw science policy for the eight months after Lord Sainsbury stepped down.

As minister of state for science and innovation, Pearson will have control of a £5bn annual budget, and responsibility for the following:

  • Business and science
  • The research base
  • The research councils
  • Innovation
  • The Technology Strategy Board
  • British National Space Centre
  • National weights and measures laboratory
  • The Design Council
  • The National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts, liaising with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport
  • Liaison with the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform
  • Energy Technologies Institute
  • Commission for Environmental Markets and Economic Performance

Enough to make anyone's head spin, right?

But he also faces a monumental task: to re-ignite an interest in science among students and the general public against a background of closing science departments, a lack of qualified teachers, falling numbers of students and courses to accommodate them, and what many consider to be a declining of the science syllabus.

New PM Gordon Brown has stressed the economic importance of science in the UK, and has promised to up the science budget to £6.3bn by 2010 as part of his drive to make sure Britain is not outpaced by the developing world.

According to his voting record on TheyWorkForYou, Pearson is an occasional rebel, defying his party line on critical issues such as the smoking ban. He liked the Iraq war, doesn't want an investigation into how it all started, and is very much in favour of ID cards.

Pearson himself has yet to issue a statement on his appointment. We have no doubt he is delighted, and looking forward to the challenge ahead. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Opportunity selfie: Martian winds have given the spunky ol' rover a spring cleaning
Power levels up 70 per cent as the rover keeps on truckin'
LOHAN and the amazing technicolor spaceplane
Our Vulture 2 livery is wrapped, and it's les noix du mutt
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
KILLER ROBOTS, DNA TAMPERING and PEEPING CYBORGS: the future looks bright!
Americans optimistic about technology despite being afraid of EVERYTHING
R.I.P. LADEE: Probe smashes into lunar surface at 3,600mph
Swan dive signs off successful science mission
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.