#David Cameron recently announced his proposal of cutting the research funding destined every year. This funds go directly to scientific research and are considered essential for the UK´s economy as chemistry related sectors generate nearly £260bn to the UK Gross Domestic Product. According to nearly 100 world-leading scientists in their fields, such measures announced by the Prime Minister could damage the UK´s future beyond repair.
In a letter wrote to Cameron and signed by top scientists it reads: "cuts in research funding might damage the UK irreparably". The letter includes the signatures of six Nobel laureates who strongly suggest the Prime Minister not to go on with this measures, condemning them to be tremendously hope-crushing. They tried to show Mr. Cameron that the sector he wants to cut funds to is showing to be key for the UK´s competitiveness. In the letter there were also mentioned some of the most immediate consequences, as well as some long-term effects, which include:
Cuts for what is called synthetic organic chemistry (creation of organic substances through chemistry) will severely damage the economy, as a whole lot of sectors directly or indirectly depend of the progress made in this area of chemistry. Some of the sectors which depend of synthetic organic chemistry vary from agriculture to medical research.
Also, this measures could force young people to lose interest in making a career out of scientific research or at least force them to seek for work elsewhere, outside of the UK, say several professors from the University of Oxford, Glasgow, Leeds, College London and more. Another undesired effect related with the lack of interest of young people in chemistry is that having less chemists available will impact several industries ranging from plastic producers to pharmacies and laboratories, as experienced chemists from Novartis, Bayer and several other huge pharmaceutical companies pointed out.
The letter also mentions that some molecules that are being either produced or investigated today could turn out to be essential for many industries, ranging from archaeology to agriculture. Damage caused by cuts to this funds can and will be devastating for every University in the United Kingdom that has a synthetic organic chemistry department.