Adrian Smith still the go to man for science in BIS

Posted on November 22, 2010 by

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After concern last week that the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills was being reorganised and Adrian Smith’s role was being abolished, we heard on Friday that Adrian Smith will be Director General of the newly created Knowledge & Innovation policy group. Science and research fall under his new beat so he is going to continue to be a key person for the research community working with BIS.

Background

Last week there was concern over reorganisations in the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and what they might mean for science. In particular, that Adrian Smith’s role as Director General of Science and Research – a key person working with the research community – was being abolished.

Policy was being reorganised into three groups, science and research falling in the new Knowledge & Innovation group. But we were waiting to find out who would be appointed to head up this group. There was concern across the science community that whoever would be appointed should have a good understanding of science and research, heightened by the fact that the government chief scientist, John Beddington, was not involved in the appointment process. Lord Krebs, chair of the Lords Science & Technology Committee, wrote to the prime minister expressing his concern. The Campaign for Science & Engineering put out a press release.  There is a good sum up of all the activity here and more details in my previous post here.

What happened on Friday

After an interview process, BIS announced that Adrian Smith had been appointed to head up the Knowledge & Innovation group.

His new post will:

..lead work to develop a strong innovative economy through the application of knowledge and closer links with universities and industries. It will also lead on policy on research, space, higher education and innovation.

Posted in: Policy