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Bill Gates’s money and his influence on British universities


This the fourth and final part of a series.

MY series on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (GF) has revealed the unparalleled influence one man, Bill Gates, has over:

·      the WHO and global health policy; 

·      British public health and Covid-19 policy, through the Gates Foundation’s funding of a number of powerful and interconnected scientific institutions, charities and companies and their personnel crossover with the government’s science advisers;  

·     The Government’s appointed science advisory bodies Sage and Nervtag through the many members and subcommittee members who are employed by academic institutions funded by GF over many years. 

This is only a partial picture of the long reach of Bill Gates into our scientific institutions. On Monday I focused on three GF-funded universities which have informed Sage on doomsday Covid-19 modelling: Imperial College London (ICL), Warwick University and the London School of Tropical Hygiene and Medicine (LSHTM). There are many more academic universities and centres which have taken the GF dollar, including those involved in the research and manufacture of vaccines, who between them set parameters of approved research and gave their research leads significant clout.

They are thus able ‘to ignore or cherry pick science and indulge in anti-competitive practices that favour their own products and those of friends and associates’, as  the executive editor of the BMJ Kamran Abbasi explained it recently. This toxic combination of scientific bias by commission and omission, exacerbated by GF funding, has led to the shutting down of science debate, to active censorship and even to dissemination of scientific untruths, as has been reported elsewhere in TCW pages. 

Many scientists and academics have been worryingly silent about the government’s anti-science response to Covid-19. The few who have spoken out have been scorned and smeared by Sage and their nodding dogs, the MSM. Can this culture of silence can be traced back to the extensive GF funding of British universities?

Let’s take Britain’s pre-eminent universities, Oxford and Cambridge, first.  

The GF’s funding of Oxford University goes back 21 years, to a first $4.7million grant for malaria and global health research in 2000.  Its giving has risen exponentially since then. In 2019, the GF gave Oxford $40million, including $9.6million for vaccine development. In 2020 it gave $10.8million, including $310,970 to improve understanding of Covid-19. To date this year, Oxford has received $152,553 from the GF.

Oxford University is the site of the Covid-19 Recovery trial (Randomised Evaluation of COVid-19 thERapY), promoted as the world’s largest randomised clinical trial. The trial’s chief investigator, Professor Peter Horby, is a key member of Sage and Nervtag. 

The Recovery trial is funded by the Wellcome Trust, the GF, the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office and the ‘Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator’, the latter being a collaboration between the GF, Wellcome Trust and MasterCard. In March 2020, Oxford University was one of three institutions to share $20million from the GF via its Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator. 

Professor Horby’s co-investigator at the Recovery Trial, Wei Shen Lim, is also a Nervtag member and chairman of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation. 

The deputy investigator of the Recovery trial, Professor Martin Landray, has further links to the GF.  He is a Lead at the UK Biobank, which is partnered with the Wellcome Trust and also a Lead of the NIHR (National Institute for Health Research) Oxford Biomedical Research Centre at Oxford University.  

In April 2017, the GF gave the NIHR Centre funding to study antibiotic resistance in tuberculosis, and a further grant in September 2017 to study typhoid vaccines.

Further funding was provided in September 2020 to research treatments for Covid-19 in care homes. 

The NIHR Centre is funded as well by the Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, as noted above itself a collaboration between the GF, Wellcome Trust and MasterCard.

In March 2020, the Wellcome Trust gave £7.5million via the Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator to see if hydroxychloroquineand chloroquine ‘can prevent the spread of Covid-19’ (not treat it, strangely). During the same year the Covid-19 Therapeutics Accelerator also gave $9.5million to the University of Washington to study the effects of hydroxychloroquine on Covid-19. 

Professor Horby has sold the Recovery Trial as a success story, but other scientists have disputed this. Last June, hard on the heels of the retraction by the Lancet of its now-notorious paper purporting to show that hydroxychloroquine not only did not help Covid-19 patients, but actually made them worse came news of the termination of the hydroxychloroquine ‘arm’ of the UK’s Recovery clinical trials. 

As reported by Edmund Fordham in TCW,  this ‘huge embarrassment was conveniently overlain by news from Oxford University that sorry, hydroxychloroquine really isn’t any good’. So even if the Lancet paper was fake, ‘a political hit job’ as one American doctor had it, Oxford’s clinical trial showed the same result. 

But the trial design had already been savaged within days of launch; it was never likely to help very sick late-stage Covid-19 patients and what Professor Landray found himself struggling to explain in an interview were ‘the very heavy doses of the drug that were given – 2400 mg in the first 24 hours, a ‘dose fit for a gorilla’ as one critic had it. 

Needless to say Professors Horby and Landray glossed over the inadequacies of this particular trial and quickly dismissed the use of hydroxychloroquine, vowing to concentrate on ‘more promising drugs’. And the possibility of a cheap and easy early treatment for Covid-19, from re-purposed generic drugs, especially hydroxychloroquine to prevent hospitalisation, was trashed.

Probing alleged conflicts of interest, France Soir noted the co-authorship of Professor Horby on papers reporting trials of Gilead’s remdesivir (there was no benefit in mortality), an agreement between his department and AstraZeneca for development of Oxford’s vaccine candidate, and generous funding from the GF. Curiously, there is a connection too between Professor Landray’s interests in Big Data and Gilead, a pharmaceutical company which was in merger talks with AstraZeneca last year. Vaccines are profitable, hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine are not. No wonder the GF invests so heavily in the organisations which research, fund and manufacture vaccines, rather than pursuing investment in better constructed early treatment trials.

A further cluster of Sage members, Professors Dame Angela McLean, Michael Parker, Gideon Henderson, Charlotte Deane and Dr Laura Merson, all work at Oxford University.  

SPI-M-O members Drs Thomas Crellen, Joshua Firth and Professor Deirdre Hollingsworth are all employed at Oxford University too. 

Cambridge University’s GF’s funding started with an initial grant of $8.1million for agricultural development in 2012. The GF awarded a grant of $998,891 in 2019 to fund research into pneumonia, and $420,000 in 2020 for global education.

More significantly, Cambridge is the site of the Cambridge Science Park, another GF-funded venture. In May 2020, GF and Google Ventures gave $45million to Cerevance, a pharmaceutical company based at Cambridge Science Park.

AstraZeneca is opening its new R&D centre at the Cambridge Biomedical Campus this month. The vaccine giant is supported by the GF, although no details are available on funding. Cambridge University and Imperial College London, both GF-funded institutions, collaborate extensively with AstraZeneca. Sage member Professor Kamlesh Khunti has received grants from AstraZeneca and has also worked as a consultant and speaker for the company. 

The Wellcome Trust is also involved in scientific research at Cambridge. Together with the Medical Research Council Centre for Global Infectious Disease Analysis, it awarded the Cambridge-based Institute of Metabolic Science £24million in 2013. Professor Julia Gog of Sage is employed at Cambridge University, as are Nervtag member Professor Ravindra Gupta and Independent Sage member Dr Tolullah Oni.

Professor Daniela DeAngelis and Dr Joshua Blake, members of SP-I-M, also work at Cambridge University.

The GF has also funded University College London (UCL), giving its first $25.2million in 2006 for HIV research. UCL was granted a total of $10.8million in 2019 and $484,000 in 2020, including $144,000 to research vaccines last March. The GF has committed funding from 2020-2023 to study postpartum haemorrhage. UCL also collaborates with the GF and the Wellcome Trust on a research project called Global Health. 

Sage members Professors Dame Anne Johnson, Andrew Hayward and Alan Penn work at UCL.

Professor Susan Michie is the Director of the Centre for Behaviour Change at UCL and sits on both Sage and Independent Sage. Her fellow Independent Sage members Professors Anthony Costello, Christina Pagel, Deenan Pillay, Ann Phoenix and Robert West all work at UCL in some capacity. 

Other less prominent academic institutions, such as the University of Southampton, are also beneficiaries of the GF’s vast financing. In 2009, Southampton received $100,000 for scientific research from the GF, and was also given specific grants of $335,800 in 2014, $3.6million in 2015 and $476,214 in 2020 for vaccine research. Sage member, Professor Guy Poppy, is employed at this university, as is Professor Lucy Yardley, a member of both Sage and SP-I-MO.

The UWE Bristol also has connections with the GF, the latter funding its climate change project called Robial. Peter Case, a UWE Bristol Law Professor, wrote a report on malaria for the GF.  Sage member, Professor Jonathan Benger, is employed at the UWE Bristol.

The GF has donated to a multitude of universities unconnected to Sage too, like Liverpool University, giving them a total of over $4million between 2010-2020, with the largest grant being $1.5million in 2010 for pneumonia research. 

The GF also funds British charities. The Dementia Discovery Fund, part of Alzheimer’s Research UK, received $50million from the GF in 2017. A small science company in Wales, the Sure Chill Company, was given £1.4million in 2014.

One investment that seems odd is in the private security firm Serco, in which it bought 3.74 million shares worth $6.6million. This collaboration is not as bizarre as it first seems. Serco is one of the companies hired by the British government to run its Test and Trace system and is likely to make up to £410million from a contract it has with the Department of Health and Social Care.

It seems that no corner of British science lies untouched by the long reach of the GF. It certainly seems to be its largest funder, giving Gates influence and control exceeding all others, with an ownership of scientists and scientific research as a critical dimension of his global control agenda.

The level of dominance which Gates holds over British science companies, institutions and universities is more than concerning.

Could the combined anti-science and harmful responses to Covid-19 by members of Sage, Independent Sage and Nervtag have anything to do with their multitude of connections to the GF? This is certainly jackpot time for these GF-funded scientists and academics, some of whom are having their moment in the sun pontificating on television to the supine masses. Fame is an addictive drug.

It’s not just the Tories have turned into Gates’s lapdogs. A controlling group of scientists and academics, with unaccountable power over our lives, have too. 

Science and scientists that question the new groupthink or fall outside the parameters of the GF approved research have little chance. Neither do we while Bill Gates remains omnipotent.

Postscript: Oxford Martin School (OMS), part of Oxford University, is also a recipient of funding from the GF. Several OMS departments are collaborating on responses to Covid-19, including one called Our World in Data.  

In 2017, this department received $350,000 from the GF to study global development, focusing on gender aspects of development and financing of health and education. 

In 2018, the GF gave Our World in Data $1.8 million to study and expand the reach of global development data.  

Sage and SP-I-MO member Professor Dam Angela McLean is employed at OMC.

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Karen Harradine
Karen Harradine
Karen is an anthropologist and freelance journalist. She writes on anti-Semitism, Israel and spirituality. She is @KarenH777on Twitter.

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