Bill sets up a better science system

  • Wayne Mapp
Science and Innovation

The science and innovation system in New Zealand will be invigorated by the Research, Science and Technology Bill passed in Parliament today, says Minister of Research, Science and Technology Wayne Mapp.

The Bill amalgamates the Ministry of Research, Science and Technology and the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology into the new Ministry of Science and Innovation (MSI).

“This new Ministry will perform a vital role in our economic growth,” Dr Mapp said.

“Innovation is the key to growth. This Bill will drive the process of putting our science and innovation priorities into action.

“Last year we began the biggest overhaul of the science system for decades.

“This is the next step in the Government’s reforms to the science system. It shows the Government’s commitment to unlocking the huge potential science has to lift our economy and our whole society,” he said.

“The simpler and more efficient system created by the Bill is part of a wide range of changes the Government is making in science and innovation in New Zealand.”

The new Ministry will start operating on 1 February 2011. The Ministry and Foundation will be disestablished, with staff shifting to MSI.

The new legislation establishes two boards to make independent decisions on proposals for funding. One board will focus on science, the other on innovation.

“This creates a balance that will ensure investment goes to areas which are Government priorities while allowing for independent decisions,” Dr Mapp said.