ROME—A new plan to radically overhaul and streamline Italy's research system has been heavily criticized by many of the heads of the country's research institutes. The plan, put forward by research minister Francesco Profumo, would see all 12 institutes overseen by the research ministry incorporated into a single new entity, the National Research Centre (CNR). Critics say the reform is rushed and threatens the future of fields in which Italy currently excels.

The reform is contained within the budget bill for 2013 agreed upon by the caretaker government of Mario Monti on Tuesday night, and comes on top of proposed major budget cuts at Italy's government institutes, announced in July but not yet implemented.(...) - by Edwin Cartlidge, ScienceInsider, 12 October 2012