asked the Parliamentary Secretary for Science whether he has read the report of the Federation of British Industries on Industrial Research in Manufacturing Industry, a copy of which has been sent to him; and what action he is taking in the matter.
Yes, Sir. I have read this report with interest, and it is being further studied both in my Office and by D.S.I.R. My noble Friend welcomes the interest shown by the Federation of British Industries in industrial research in manufacturing industry, and he joined in the discussion of the report at a recent meeting of the National Production Advisory Council for Industry.
Has my hon. Friend noted that much of this research is carried out in certain specific industries and by larger firms? Does he consider that the balance is correct? If not, what does he intend to do to change it?
I noticed with particular interest the sections of the report dealing with the relatively few small firms which belong to even one research association. The research associations are at present doing their best, some of them with special assistance grants from D.S.I.R., to increase the number of their members and improve liaison between the laboratory and the existing members.