In a wide-ranging interview on the BBC's World at One programme, Institute Director and Chief Executive Adrian Smith, has spoken about the need for future investment in science, race and representation, algorithmic bias and the UK’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Adrian Smith

In the interview (broadcast on Tuesday 12 October 2021) Adrian also explained that the Turing is "very concerned about safe and ethical AI and the elimination of biases."

Speaking also in his capacity as President of the Royal Society, Adrian raised concerns about future scientific investment. He discussed how essential investment was, saying, “Historically and at present we are terrific at science, 1% of the world’s population and 2.7% of global R&D, we produce more than 15% of the most highly cited research papers, so we are a powerful scientific nation, but the world is increasingly competitive the expenditures in China, America, France, Germany, the investments in the research base are going up dramatically.”

"Historically and at present we are terrific at science, 1% of the world’s population and 2.7% of global R&D, we produce more than 15% of the most highly cited research papers, so we are a powerful scientific nation but the world is increasingly competitive the expenditures in China, America, France, Germany, the investments in the research base are going up dramatically.”

Adrian also spoke candidly about the lack of representation in science, raising concerns about the “stark and unacceptable statistics of dropout rates and a lack of career success" among black scientists going on to say that ‘the current situation is completely unacceptable’. His comments came as it emerged that just 0.7 per cent of professor posts in the UK are held by black scientists, according to data released by the Higher Education Statistics Agency.

Listen to the full interview here: BBC Radio 4 - World at One, 12/10/2021 (the interview starts at 31:56)