COMMONS

New inquiry into UK Centre for Medical Research and Innovation

Microscope
18 November 2010

The Science and Technology Committee announces a new inquiry into the UK Centre for Medical Research and Innovation (UKCMRI)

Andrew Miller MP, Chair of the Science and Technology Committee, said

"The previous Committee published a report in January 2008 welcoming and supporting the creation of a leading medical research centre based in the UK, but had concerns about management and costs.

With the announcement confirming funding for the project in October’s Spending Review it is now very timely to scrutinise the UK Centre for Medical Research and Innovation."

Background

In 2007 the former Government gave its backing to plans to create the UK Centre for Medical Research and Innovation (UKCMRI) at St Pancras in London.  The plan is for it to be Europe’s leading centre for medical research, maintaining Britain’s position at the forefront of global medical research, strengthening the UK economy and, through links with the NHS, change patients’ lives. The centre will bring together science teams from the Medical Research Council (MRC), Cancer Research UK, The Wellcome Trust, and University College London.

The Coalition Government confirmed funding for the project on 20 October 2010 as part of the Spending Review, announcing that it will invest £220 million over four years. David Willetts MP, the Science Minister, and representatives of the four partners signed a Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) to establish UKCMRI on 9 November 2010.

Terms of reference

The terms of reference for this inquiry are outlined below, and the Committee invites written submissions on these issues by the close on Wednesday 12 January 2011.

  1. Review the progress on the UKCMRI since 2008 and assess the plans for the coming years.
  2. What do the four partners hope to achieve from the project and what new technologies and innovations are being considered?
  3. Is the financing of the UKCMRI robust and justified, with particular reference to the public support for the project and the knock-on effect on budgets for other research?
  4. What are the risk assessment arrangements to ensure the safety of the site?
  5. What are the arrangements for the closure of the existing National Institute for Medical Research at Mill Hill?

The Committee will not be considering the UKCMRI’s planning application made to the London Borough of Camden in September 2010.

Each submission should:

a) be no more than 3,000 words in length;
b) be in Word format with as little use of colour or logos as possible;
c) have numbered paragraphs; and
d) include a declaration of interests.

A copy of the submission should be sent by e-mail to [email protected] and marked "UKCMRI".

An additional paper copy should be sent to:

The Clerk
Science and Technology Committee
House of Commons
7 Millbank
London SW1P 3JA

Image: iStockphoto 

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