4 May 2011

Government shelves idea to merge research institutes

8:37 am on 4 May 2011

The Government has backed away from merging a number of the Crown Research Institutes.

The eight Government-owned institutes work in different areas of science.

Research, Science and Technology Minister Wayne Mapp had been considering holding a review of the CRIs, with a view to some amalgamations.

However, Dr Mapp says that will not go ahead.

He says the focus needs to be on the emerging high tech sector. However, Dr Mapp says that may have implications for one of the institutes, Industrial Research Ltd, which is based in Wellington.

The Association of Scientists says there is a degree of nervousness in the sector.

Vice president Professor Shaun Hendy says there will need to be a funding increase, rather than just re-locating people or restructuring jobs at IRL, if the Government wants to expand research capabilities for the high-tech sector.