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British Academy welcomes ministerial clarification on anti-lobbying clause

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The British Academy has welcomed today’s announcement from the Department for Business Innovation and Skills on the clause in government grants.

Commenting on the announcement Lord Stern, President of the British Academy, said: 

‘The British Academy welcomes today’s announcement of the government’s intention that science and research bodies, including the National Academies, will not be covered by the Anti-Lobbying Clause. This is excellent news for researchers and scholars across the humanities and social sciences who provide expert evidence and independent advice to inform policy making on issues ranging from protecting the environment to the role of faith in modern day conflicts.  It is important that they remain free to choose their topics and follow where the evidence takes them, and to communicate their findings widely.”

Universities and Science Minister Jo Johnson MP followed up a statement in the House of Lords this afternoon by confirming that the government intended that science and research funding bodies would not be covered by the forthcoming anti-lobbying clause.  

He said: ‘I have been talking to the research community and working hard with colleagues in government to determine what clarification may be necessary to ensure that research is not adversely affected in any way. I am happy to confirm that it is not our intention for the Research Councils, the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) or the National Academies to be covered by the clause. We are continuing to talk to the research community and will outline more detail by 1 May, when this clause takes effect.’

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