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German science facing tough times, too

June 3, 2009

In a story that is eerily familiar, Nature reported yesterday that German science funding is at risk, in part due to massive auto bailouts by the German government. A total package of €18-billion for three sicence programmes was agreed upon in April by leaders of various levels of government. The spending was to be finalized this week, but may be delayed due to difficult economic times, said the German finance minister. 

Nature quotes a spokesman voicing the frustration of German researchers:

“What if after the election there is even more crisis, more national debts and more unemployment?” asks Jürgen Mlynek, president of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres, and spokesman for the Alliance of the German Science Organizations. “Why is it so hard to justify sound investment in science at a time when billions and billions are thrown at ruined banks and struggling car industries?”


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