§ Mr. Soames
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he has taken to encourage greater concentration and selectivity of research activities.
§ Mr. Dunn
My right hon. Friend is advised on the distribution of funds for research by the Advisory Board for the Research Councils, and the University Grants Committee, and he has encouraged these bodies to adopt an increasingly selective approach. Progress has been achieved through the major restructuring being undertaken by research councils, including the rationalisation of sites, and re-ordering of scientific priorities; and through the more selective procedures adopted by the UGC in its distribution of research funds. The ABRC will further address the question of selectivity and concentration, in consultation with the UGC, in the strategy document it is preparing which will form part of its advice to my right hon. Friend in the spring of this year.