Britain’s leading academics and scientists say a British exit from the EU would be catastrophic for universities and scientific research.
They also warned the move would also cost tens of millions of pounds in funding and leave prestigious UK institutions struggling to compete on the world stage.
Scientists from fields as diverse as neuroscience, astronomy, robotics, immunology, particle physics, sustainable agriculture, molecular biology, nanotechnology, cancer and photon therapy said an exit from the EU would lead to funding cuts, make recruiting and retaining top academic talent harder, and — crucially — cripple the cross-border collaboration on which research thrives.
EU membership has long been a contentious topic in Britain. Eurosceptics, who believe the UK would be better off outside the political and economic union, seek the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.
The UK government is set to hold a referendum by the end of 2017 on whether to leave the 28-nation EU.