A CAVERSHAM PhD student relished the opportunity to speak and turn the tables on key political figures at the House of Commons on Wednesday (March 15).

Anna Lambert, a student at University College London, was chosen to represent the Council for the Mathematical Sciences at this year’s Voice of the Future, which took place in Westminster earlier this week.

The former Kendrick School pupil had the chance to contribute on a broad range of social topics, including financial disparity, the effects of Brexit on British science and the policies of Donald Trump.

Speaking after the event, Anna said: “Voice of the Future was a unique opportunity for me and other young scientists to question politicians in a reversal of the usual select committee format.

“It was great to hear how much weight MPs put on scientific evidence when making decisions. I hope to work in government policy in the future and this event really strengthened my interest.”

The afternoon saw over 60 representatives pitch their questions to an esteemed panel, including Sir Mark Walport, the Government's chief scientific advisor and Jo Johnson MP - minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation.

Young scientists and engineers had the chance to put their burning science policy questions to these key political figures, while enhancing their own understanding of how Parliament reaches important decision.

Describing the importance of Voice of the Future, Dr Stephen Benn, from the Royal Society of Biology, added: “This is a unique event. In no other part of Parliament is the normal select committee format completely reversed so that MPs, the Minister and the Shadow Minister have to answer questions rather than ask them.

“It is important that policy makers use reliable evidence in their decisions, and today’s young scientists and engineers will be a vital part of this in the future.”