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Tuesday, March 04, 2008

FoI: the next act

From the same article that reported on the leaked IIP report we have a bit on the documents released by STFC following a FoI request from Prof. Ken Peach to gain access to material input from STFC to the CSR:

The documents also revealed that the STFC asked for £87.4m for space science, its largest single bid out of a total of £151m requested for additional research over three years. Peach says he is "surprised at the disproportionate emphasis on space exploration and technology", which may have left other areas of the STFC's portfolio underfunded. He has submitted a further FoI request to find out whether the STFC's focus on space was guided by the Department of Innovation, Universities and Skills, given the government's renewed interested in space science.

Prof. Peach is not the only one surprised at the emphasis on space technology.

It will be interesting to see the result of the new FoI request. I think many of us want to know what is driving this strategy from STFC, was it government or are we following one man's 'vision'? Somewhere in-between? Or is there a hitherto quiet but massive cadre of space technology buffs who are brilliant at lobbying to STFC and DIUS.

Maybe soon we will know.

By the way, Prof. Peach is the one who wrote that wonderful response to the STFC CEO spin where we were all likened to 'rocks on the road to a brighter future'.


Very Anonymous Physicist said...

I don't understand the fuss about the IiP report. This has been known to STFC staff since December.

It's just the latest instalment of a little game we liked to play at CLRC.
Senior management at RAL decide they want IiP status. So an assessor goes to RAL and interviews loads of people. They tell him how wonderful it is to work for CLRC, how well managed it is, what a privilege it is to be advancing knowledge etc, etc, blah, blah.
Then the assessor comes to Daresbury and we tell him how p*ss-poor the management are, how they have been trying to shut the lab for years, how they starve us of funds, how they ignore our ideas, etc, etc, blah, blah.
Then we all have fun at coffee guessing which lab the assessor will believe. This latest one takes us to 2-1 in Daresbury's favour ;) I think this time it was swung by a few like minded individuals at Swindon.

The real bombshell is the £80M for bombing the moon that Mason wants. I've said it before, the man is a zealot.

Kav said...

Maybe because this is the first time it has been seen in the public domain. It is now embarrassing rather than a nuisance. It may also be the first time that a number of STFC funded scientists have seen it.