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Why Low Inflation Is Bad for U.K. Scientists

According to Times Higher Education, lower than expected inflation rates have U.K. research councils considering whether they can legally demand that grantees return some money to the councils.

New grants awarded in the 2008-09 financial year, for example, were increased to a cash limit calculated using an annual inflation rate of 2.7 per cent.

For the 2009-10 financial year, the inflation rate on new awards is 1.5 per cent to reflect the current figure.

But Times Higher Education has learnt that Research Councils UK has sought legal advice on whether it can retrospectively apply today's indexation rates to ongoing grants.