Government Scraps Plans for Web Science Institute

The new government has cut funding for the proposed Web Science Institute which was to be headed up by Sir Tim Berners-Lee in Southampton.

Gordon Brown announced the original plans for the institute earlier in the year, proposing that it would focus upon "emerging web and internet technologies".

Following the announcement, the institute received nearly £30m of funding which was supposed to help the UK become a world leader in these areas.

However, despite these initial hopes, funding has now been withdrawn.

Despite the Lib Dems and Tories both originally pledging to support the institute, today they have announced that they will be withdrawing this funding.

George Osbourne, our new chancellor has already promised to cut £6.2bn fomr public sector spending to reduce the vast budget deficit.

A spokesperson for the government has said that the Tories and Lib Dems recognise that internet technologies are an important area of research . They have stated that they shall be supporting the technical field instead, with research councils and the Technology Strategy Board.

The Spokesperson stated: "The research councils are investing £117m in a Digital Economy Programme to help drive research in this area, and more than £30m is being invested in specific projects relating to the semantic web."

"In light of the current pressures on public finances, the government has decided that it cannot support the creation of a new Institute for Web Science at Southampton University at this time."

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