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Gemini Observatory: Finance

Volume 470: debated on Tuesday 15 January 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills (1) what factors were taken into account by the Science and Technology Funding Council in making its decision to withdraw funding from the Gemini Observatory consortium; (171951)

(2) what assessment he has made of the likely effects of the decision by the Science and Technology Funding Council to withdraw funding from the Gemini Observatory consortium; and if he will make a statement.

The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) has recently reviewed its participation in the Gemini Observatory in the light of its scientific priorities and overall budget. The Council has indicated that it is planning to withdraw from the Observatory project, but before doing so, it will discuss the implications with its consortium partners.