Tuesday 21 June 2016

Pharmaceutical Microbiology - Vote To Remain In Europe

The U.K. referendum taking place on June 23, on whether to remain or to leave the European Union, is being discussed on many levels, from the economic to the nationalistic. Another important area is science: will British science be better or worse in or out?

On this subject, Pharmaceutical Microbiology Resources website is supporting the vote for the U.K. to remain part of the European Union.

Looking at the scientific argument, a U.K. science base outside of the European Union would not access the funding it needs. For instance, one main route of funding is the Horizon 2020 initiative. Horizon 2020 is the financial instrument implementing the Innovation Union, a Europe 2020 flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe's global competitiveness.

Further arguments are centred on access to funding and uncertainty about future research collaboration. The EU produces over a third of the world’s scientific output. In addition, networking is crucial to being a world-leading science nation and U.K. scientists need to interact with European colleagues.

Another complication, should the U.K. pull out, is the issue of the recognition of professional qualifications.

This opinion is supported by a British government science policy committee, which recently concluded an inquiry by stating that European Union membership has been a crucial factor in shaping U.K. environmental policy on air and water pollution, and biodiversity.

To withdraw would lead to other adverse impacts – social, political, economic and cultural.

I believe that it benefits the U.K., the European Union, and global science for the U.K. to remain a strong committed member of the European Union.

Tim Sandle

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