Tuesday, 28 October 2008
Liberal Democrat chairman of the committee, said "the group were disappointed with Watmore's defence of his brand." The committee also feels strongly about the department's use of jargon and Willis warns that this approach to communication needs to change. Research Fortnight quotes Willis as saying, "They have to stop the flimflam and concentrate on what really matters", moving science and research up the agenda.
The changes are:
- The creation of four new research committees from the existing seven
- The setting up of a mixed economy of peer review membership, including core committee members and a pool of reviewers able to be called on flexibly for their specific expertise
- New research and policy priorities that will overarch all of BBSRC’s activities. The policy priorities will help BBSRC researchers to consider the strategic relevance of their proposals when they make applications
- A system of highlight notices that BBSRC will use to generate demand when it identifies the need for more applications in certain areas
- Institute Strategic Programme Grants to replace Core Strategic Grants to the BBSRC-sponsored Institutes
BBSRC Chief Executive Doug Kell has said, "These changes are not about abandoning responsive mode or about forcing researchers to work in industry. It is a fallacy that responsive mode research is only for blue skies or fundamental science. The criteria for peer review will not change. BBSRC will always fund excellent science. What we want the new system to do is to encourage our research community to think about the strategic focus of their applications and then ensure that when we fund excellent science we are able to capture the impact of the outcomes."
The appointment of Drayson has been largely received with enthusiasm. “He’s a carbon copy of David Sainsbury” says Ian Gibson MP, as quoted in Research Fortnight, “He’s a scientist, he’s had the experience of running a business – and he drives fast cars.” Drayon’s passion for racing looks set to compliment his new role as he promises to ‘put pedal to metal’, moving away from a culture of reviews and reports instead focusing on implementing change.
Monday, 6 October 2008
A prospectus for a New Organisation (NO) to represent the biosciences has been written by Dr Richard Dyer for the BSF. The prospectus outlines the background to the discussions between the BSF and IoB, and includes information on the finance and structures, and immediate goals for NO.
Read the prospectus for a New Organisation
Thursday, 2 October 2008
The Athena SWAN Charter is a scheme which recognises excellence in Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) employment in higher education. The Charter was launched in June 2005. Any university or research institution which is committed to the advancement and promotion of the careers of women in SET in higher education and research can apply for membership.
Find out more about the Athena SWAN awards.