News & Views Index



Former Chairman of Intel, Craig Barrett, Talks Economy to Thomas Friedman.    29/06/09

    What Mr Barrett had to say has sufficient overall relevance that it just might be worth "Australianising". [More]


What's in a Name?    26/06/09

    Element 112 has been officially recognized by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, but what is to be its name? [More]


Royal Society Announces Shortlist for its 2009 Science Book Prize.    26/06/09

    What the nose knows: The science of scent in everyday life; Bad science;  The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic generation discovered the beauty and terror of science;  Decoding the heavens: Solving the mystery of the world's first computer; The drunkard's walk: How randomness rules our lives; Your inner fish: The amazing discovery of our 375-million-year-old ancestor. [More


What Do Research Universities Need?    24/06/09

    A bipartisan letter written by four members of the US Congress to the presidents of the nation's National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering and Institute of Medicine gives an indication of the differences in approach in addressing problems of academic research in the United States and Australia. [More]


The Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research Announces Recipients of the 2009 Australian Laureate Fellowships.    23/06/09

    These well-endowed five-year fellowships are a replacement of the Federation Fellowships that were instituted by the Coalition Government in 2002. [More]


Mediocre Teachers Breed Mediocre Schools = Mediocre Education.    20/06/09

    You'd think it was belabouring the bleedin' obvious, but the topic is once again in the semi-popular media, i.e. The Australian's Higher Education Supplement. [More]


Three Critiques of Ian Plimer's Heaven and Earth vs Anthropogenic Effects on Climate.    19/06/09

    Hear/read three of Australia's most qualified scientists review Ian Plimer's  Heaven and Earth; then listen to John Holdren and Jane Lubchenco introduce the report Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States and its authors, and if you wish, download and read it. [More]


A Touch of History --The Universities, The Senate Committee and the Begging Bowl.    18/06/09
    One July 23, 2001 TFW sent its intrepid reporter over to the NSW State Library to report on the public hearing of the Senate committee focusing on The Capacity of Public Universities to Meet Australia’s Higher Education Needs. [More]


Australian Academy of Science and the Federal Budget.    18/06/09

     In the Academy's June newsletter it has included its assessment. [More]


OECD Releases 2008 Teaching and Learning International Survey.    17/06/09

    The 2008 OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) report was released, at least in preprint form, today. The Federal Minister for Education, Julia Gillard in commenting on the report observed that it was conducted in 23 countries and "provides the first internationally comparable data on conditions affecting teachers in schools". [More]


A Short Summary on Nation's Quasi Commitments on Greenhouse Gas Reduction.    17/06/09

    On May 4, 2009 Australia's Minister for Climate Change and Water, Penny Wong announced a revised target for reducing Australia’s greenhouse gas  pollution. [More]


Secretary of State of the UK's New "Super" Ministry for Business, Innovation and Skills, Peter Mandelson's Rationalisation.    16/06/09

     The Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (DBIS) which, in addition to matters of business, will have responsibility for higher and further education policy. [More]


The Australian Science Media Centre Gathers Replies to Senator Fielding.    15/06/09

    Link Between CO2 and Temperature – Experts Respond. [More]


US Department of Energy May Spend US$1 Billion on an Experimental Coal-Fired Power Plant Called FutureGen.    13/06/09

    Although the plan was conceived during the Bush administration, last year the outgoing Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman cancelled funding for it as costs began to rise steeply. [More]


Low Socio-Economic Status and Higher Education in Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics.    13/06/09

    Australia's 2009/10 federal budget, brought down on May 12, allocates additional funds for institutions that attract and retain low socio-economic-status students. How might it be done. [More


Bobby McFerrin Sang It:  Don't Worry Be Happy.    11/06/09

    Senator Fielding, all we really need to do is to sequester atmospheric nitrogen and all will be well. [More


Some California Legislators Propose Stripping the University of California of Its Constitutional Autonomy.    10/06/09

    The University of California expects to see a cut of US$800 million from the US$3.2 billion in state funds. [More]


Germany to Allocate €18 Billion More for Research Over Next 10 Years.    10/06/09 [More]


Is Senator Fielding being Disingenuous?    09/06/09

    Family First Senator Stephen Fielding fresh back from a conference of deniers of the anthropogenic contribution to current global warming asks rhetorically: "Is carbon emissions really the major driving force of global temperature change?" [More]


How Much Climate Change Can be Avoided by Mitigation?    08/06/09

    "Compared to a non-intervention reference scenario, emission reductions of about 70% by 2100 are required to prevent roughly half the change in temperature and precipitation that would otherwise occur." [More


Royal Society's Response to UK Ministerial  Changes.    07/06/09

    In response to the merging of DIUS with BERR Martin Rees, President of the Royal Society, said... [More]


PMSEIC Swims Through Glue.    05/06/09

     Working under its new model PMSEIC "will require a broad vision and cross-portfolio co-operation..." [More]


A Viewpoint Worth Repeating.    05/06/09

    Science reports that the next Mars rover will be named Curiosity. The name was suggested by  Clara Ma, age 12, from Lenexa, Kansas. [More]


Nature Reports on India's New Science Minister.    04/06/09 [More]


Are Mathematicians Speaking to the Hand?    03/06/09

    Two-and-a-half years ago TFW wrote: "The National Strategic Review of Mathematical Research in Australia, released today, concludes representation of mathematics and statistics in Australia's university sector is dangerously deficient... [More]


Group of Eight's Response to 2009/10 Federal Budget.    03/06/09

    The Group of Eight (Go8) universities has resoundingly welcomed the Australian Federal Budget brought down on May 12 which included only this mildest of  caveats. [More]


President of the Australian Institute of Physics Comments on Australia's 2009/10 Budget.    01/06/09 [More]