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Ministry reshuffle reunifies education and training…

21 December 2014

…and unifies industry and science

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 In a wideranging reshuffle of the Abbott ministry, education and  vocational education and training have been seemingly reunified and industry and science unified.

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Education minister Christopher Pyne will become minister for education and training, with VET coming from the industry portfolio to be reunified with education ( why was it ever separated?). Parliamentary secretary Simon Birmingham will become his new assistant minister, with prime minister Abbott saying he will have a key role in policy and programs relating to skills formation. Current assistant education minister Sussan Ley has been appointed to the cabinet post of minister for health, making her the second woman in the Abbott cabinet after foreign minister Julie Bishop.
Amid criticism for not having a clear science ministry, industry minister Ian Macfarlane will be rebranded as minister for industry and science, and Karen Andrews will become his assistant minister. Science was previously split between the industry and education portfolios and prime minister Abbott has long said MacFarlane did not need science in his title. But he now acknowledges that “sometimes it helps if you put these things in the title”:

I have decided to state in words what I thought was always obvious so it is obvious for everyone, he is now the minister for industry and science.

In announcing the change, prime minister Abbott said this would put “science at the heart of industry”, which would not necessarily be a bad thing.  Alternatively, it could put “industry at the heart of science”, which might not necessarily be a good thing. We will wait for the details.

 

Meanwhile, you might want to read this…or not:
Abbott reshuffles ministry, rearranges deck-chairs and declares all barnacles gone and ship unsinkable!

 

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