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No Science Minister for Australia

The new cabinet of Australia's new prime minister will include fewer posts, and one of those eliminated is the science minister, the New Scientist reports.

"Science will largely be in the industry portfolio," incoming Prime Minister Tony Abbot says, adding that some responsibilities will be shouldered by the education minister.

The elimination of the post has raised concerns among scientists. "It's absolutely critical that we have a minister of science," says Catriona Jackson, the CEO of Science and Technology Australia. "You need someone to go into cabinet and fight for the scientific cause. There's science in virtually everything the government does."

Others, though, says there may not be any cause for concern. "I presume one of the presently announced ministers will have a letterhead that says something like 'Minister for X', with 'plus X, Y and Z in brackets,'" Ian Chubb, the chief scientist of Australia, tells the Australian.