Justice Canada chops research budget by $1.2-million – The Globe and Mail

Worrisome. Not the decision itself to cut research funding as much as the reason: not liking the results, and wanting to align research to government policy, rather than understanding of society. While public service research sometimes was less neutral and impartial than it should have been (had my experience in multiculturalism research in this regard), this change abandons any claim to independent and objective research.

Abdication of “fearless advice” role of public service. Hopefully this will provoke more serious reflection among senior ranks of the public service rather than the rather shallow Destination 2020 initiative:

The result is a diminished research capacity, which now must be better controlled from the top to ensure it supports the government policies, says the report.

“The review confirmed that there have been examples of work that was not aligned with government or departmental priorities,” says the October 2013 document, obtained by The Canadian Press under the Access to Information Act.

Some past projects have “at times left the impression that research is undermining government decisions.”

The report did not cite specific studies, but a department report last year on public confidence in the justice system appeared to be at odds with the Conservative government’s agenda.

Researcher Charlotte Fraser found many Canadians lacked confidence in the courts and prison system, but suggested it was the result of misunderstanding rather than any failures in the system, and that education could rectify the problem.

Justice Canada chops research budget by $1.2-million – The Globe and Mail.

Le budget de la recherche en droit fond de 1,2 million (La Presse)

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

One Response to Justice Canada chops research budget by $1.2-million – The Globe and Mail

  1. Pingback: Staffing cuts strain Justice Department | Multicultural Meanderings

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