Wednesday, 25 February 2009
High priorities are basic competitiveness-related research, biomedical research, energy R&D and climate change programmes. The National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Energy Office of Science (DOE OS), and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the three agencies highlighted in the America COMPETES Act of 2007 and President Bush’s American Competitiveness Initiative (ACI), will all receive significant boosts to their budgets. The final stimulus bill challenges the major R&D funding agencies to spend these large stimulus appropriations quickly, while at the same time spending them well. There will be unusual scrutiny of how and how fast the money will be spent. Scrutiny will be made possible by extensive accountability and transparency mandates in the bill, including separate appropriations for agency inspectors general and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to monitor stimulus spending.
Read the comprehensive AAAS report in full.
In the Times article he is quoted as saying, "I don't think the question now can be whether we go in this direction, but there are a great many questions about how we do so most effectively." Although Mr Denham has pledged that 'the new policy would protect basic curiosity-led research', he has acknowledged that some cuts will be involved. He also added that fundamental research was central to the new strategy - 'though scientists should make sure that they were quick to exploit any useful insights that emerged from it'.
Read the Times article in full.
Wednesday, 18 February 2009
Find out more about the FEBS/EMBO WISE Award
Monday, 16 February 2009
- not already be under examination by the Committee as part of another inquiry (see the Committee’s website for details of current work)
- be capable of being covered in two hours of oral evidence, with two panels of witnesses (the second panel normally being Ministers or officials, no more than four witnesses on any panel)
- be timely
- not relate to individual cases/any matters before the Courts or Tribunals.
Friday, 13 February 2009
The letter was coordinated by Professor Donald Braben (UCL) and Professor Philip Moriarty (University of Nottingham). Professor Braben is quoted as saying, "As soon as you identify a beneficiary for researh... the councils are going to turn it around and say, right, deliver. And then it is applied research... You can't have blue-skies research if you put caveats on it."
Speaking on behalf of the Research Councils, Philip Esler (chief executive of the Arts and Humanities Research Council) is quoted as saying in response, "The description of impact that the research councils work with is broad, encompassing not only the contribution research makes to the economy but also to society as a whole. It covers not only economic benefits, but also those related to public policy, quality of life, health and creative output. Research councils will not be disadvantaging blue-skies research, nor stifling creativity."
Read the THES article in full.
Wednesday, 11 February 2009
Four Fellowships will be awarded in 2009 to outstanding female postdoctoral scientists to assist them with their research. The Fellowships, each worth £15,000 (equivalent € for candidates in Ireland), are tenable at any UK or Irish university or research institute to support a 12-month period of research.
The fellowship money can be spent in any number of innovative ways to enable women scientists to further their careers and facilitate world class research - such as buying equipment, paying for childcare or funding travel costs to an overseas conference.
The deadline for applications is 8 April 2009.
Visit the Women in Science website to find out more and apply.
The Fellowships provide placements working with a national press, broadcast or internet journalist. During the placements of between 3 and 8 weeks Fellows learn to work within the conditions and constraints of the media to produce accurate and well informed pieces about developments in science.
Read reports from the 2008 Media Fellows.
Tuesday, 10 February 2009
What do you think? Use the comments section to tell us your views.
Read the Biochemist article in full.
Read the POSTnote in full.
Read the SciDev article in full.
Read the 'Learning Science in Informal Environments: People, Places, and Pursuits' report online.
Monday, 9 February 2009
Read "Standing up for Science 2 - the nuts and bolts" online.
Visit the Sense about Science website.
Friday, 6 February 2009
Hugh Tollyfield, HEFCE's special advisor on employer engagement, cited the example of 'how institutions situated near the factories of steel manufacturer Corus, which recently announced massive job cutes because of the slump, might attract ECIF cash. "They might offer short courses to people who have been made redundant so they have better prospects in the job market, or they might look at opportunities for improving processes (such as steel production)"'.
Read the THES article in full.
Visit the HEFCE website to find out more.
However, a decision was announced by HEFCE to ring-fence funding for science subjects (normally strongest in traditional universities) at the expense of other disciplines. This decision is expected to divert about £50 million away from arts-based subjects, where the research excellence of the post-1992 institutions is concentrated.
Read the THES article in full.
Thursday, 5 February 2009
12:00 - 12.30 Registration
12:30 - 13.15 Lunch
13.15 - 13.30 Welcome
13.30 - 13.35 Introduction (Phil Willis MP)
13:35 - 15:30 Science Question Time
Questions to Panel of Parliamentarians
Commons Select Committee on Innovation, Universities and Skills
Visit the RSC website for more information and an application form.
Wednesday, 4 February 2009
Key issues are:
- Structuring the National Programme effectively so that it may deliver on a national scale
- The benefits the National Programme could offer to you and your organisation and how it may best achieve these
- Effective practices upon which it may build
Consultation will take place online in addition to regional consultations. These regional consultations will take place on:
9th February - Botanical Gardens, Birmingham
12th February - Hallam Conference Centre, London
17th February - Hewlett-Packard Labs, Bristol
19th February - University of Bradford