Shadow Minister for Science Paul Fletcher MP gave the following address to Science Meets Parliament 2023.
I’m Paul Fletcher, Shadow Minister for Science, and it’s my pleasure to add my welcome to the participants in Science Meets Parliament 2023.
Now we all know that the scientific method is something to cherish. You take a hypothesis you test it rigorously, it’s important to see if the results can be replicated by other scientists and through this process over many centuries we’ve greatly added to the stock of human knowledge, and our standard of living, as well as our knowledge of the world around us has increased exponentially.
Now politics doesn’t always work in quite the same rational, evidence-based fashion. A shocking admission, I know but it’s hard to deny it. Nevertheless, I do want you to be confident that your work as scientists is enormously respected and valued across the political spectrum. We know that work advancing the frontiers of human knowledge is enormously important, and of course we also recognise that as well as that basic research, there is applied research, the commercialisation of research and the more direct economic benefits that brings.
So whatever your field of science, I hope that you find your participation in Science Meets Parliament to be an opportunity for you to inform politicians and those involved in the political process about the work you’re doing, why it matters, and help get us all a little bit further up the curve.
So please bring your expertise but also your passion to the fore as you engage with politicians during Science Meets Parliament.