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Short piece on the Guardian website on the relationship between evidence-based and fact-free politics.

Science and engineering in government must be treated with kid gloves

Emphasising science and engineering in government counters fact-free politics, but caution is key, I argue in this piece written for the Guardian.

UK government chief science adviser Sir John Beddington recently argued that scientists and engineers should be at the heart of government. He claims that they can and should help Whitehall address global policy challenges with their expertise and experience of working in an open and collaborative manner. Beddington’s argument is neat and convincing: after all, who could ever argue against the accumulation of knowledge and evidence-based policy making as an antidote to fact-free politics? However, a word of caution is in order.