News & Views Index
August
2009

 

 

US President Obama's Plan for Science and Innovation Doubling Funding for Key Basic Research Agencies in the 2010 Budget.    31/08/09

      The 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act signed by President Obama has put the NSF, NIST and DOE-SC on a "doubling trajectory". [More] 

 

The Mystery of the Telescopes in Brueghel's Paintings.    28/08/09 [More]

 

President Emeritus of the Carnegie Institution of Washington Champions Great Teachers for STEM.    28/08/09

     The quality of STEM teaching is of singular importance to the success of students, requiring "great teachers, who know the content." [More]

 

Australian Fields Medallist Terry Tao on Month's Tour.    27/08/09

    Professor Tao will be in Australia from late August 2009 for just over a month giving public lectures in most capital cities. [More

 

The Tyranny of the Czech Biblometric.    27/08/09

    A letter in the correspondence section of today's Nature might encourage those working on Senator Carr's ERA to pause and reflect. [More]

 

Multitasking -- the Flip Side.    26/08/09

    Several years back Time magazine interviewed a number of well known individuals from corporate high fliers to celebrities and even a Nobel Laureate... [More]

 

Watt Value of Plank's Constant is a Kilogram?    25/08/09 [More]

 

National Literacy and Numeracy Week 2009.    24/08/09

    John Flanagan, author of the Rangerís Apprentice adventure series and Simon Pampena, standĖup mathematics comedian, are to be the Literacy and Numeracy Ambassadors respectively during National Literacy and Numeracy Week. [More]

 

Royal Society Allocates £100,000 for Research to Develop Invisibility Cloaks.    22/08/09

    "Harry Potter's invisibility cloak could potentially become a reality thanks to over £100,000 funding from The Royal Society." [More

 

New Zealand Joins Forces with Australia in Bid for Square Kilometre Array.    21/08/09 [More]

 

NIH to Get a 5-Point Plan.    21/08/09

    Frances Collins, the newly appointed Director of the US National Institutes of Health has laid out his priorities for the US$30.4 billion dollar organisation. [More]

 

Peer Review: an Irish Perspective.    20/08/09

   ...in a list of 'Top countries in all fields' (ranked by citations per paper) [w]e are now placed 19th, up from 36th place in 2003. [More]

 

Climate Gloom -- What Will, What Way?    20/08/09

    An item from Nature to gladden the hearts of climate sceptics here and beyond. [More]

 

Eureka Prize Winners Announced.    19/08/09

    The Australian Museum's Eureka Prizes acknowledge outstanding achievements in Australian scientific research, leadership and innovation, communication and journalism and school science. [More]

 

Chief Executive of New Zealand's Ministry of Research, Science and Technology Speaks at AAAS.    19/08/09

     "We have a unique perspective that we can and, indeed, must offer in finding solutions to global environmental challenges." [More]

 

AUQA: Setting and Monitoring Academic Standards for Australian Higher Education.    18/08/09

    This past May the Australian Universities Quality Agency released a 20 page Discussion Paper which brought forth 54 submissions many forthright in their assessments. [More]

 

India's Thirty Year, A$23 Billion Plan to Lead in Solar Energy.    17/08/09

    The prime minister of India, Manmohan Singh, announced his intention to transform his nation into a global leader in solar energy. [More]

 

The Thrall of the Citation Index.    17/08/09

     Last Thursday ZoŽ Corbin, writing in The Times, asked the rhetorical question, "Do academic journals pose a threat to the advancement of science?" and took some 4,000 words to answer it. [More]

 

Finland's Higher Education Sector Set for an Extreme Makeover.    15/08/09  [More]

 

Seven Paths Toward a More Efficient Use of Energy.    14/08/09

    The August 14, 2009 issue of the scientific weekly Science has devoted its "News Focus" section to more efficient use of energy. [More]

 

Steven Chu Doesn't Go to Washington and Pays a Price.    14/08/09

    President Obama's  driving Secretary of Energy, Nobel Laureate Steven Chu got a lesson in Washingtonian etiquette the other day as he explained to the 21 members of PCAST. [More]

 

A Bit of Good News for the University of California.    13/08/09

    An injection of US$200 million should help in slowing the descent of the University of California's ten campuses in the research university rankings. [More]

 

ANU Vice-chancellor Addresses the Lowy Institute.    12/08/09

    I'm clocking up my 15th year as a vice-chancellor and... [I] have seen a lot of changes - some of them good, some not so good. [More]

 

Report on US President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology Inaugural Meeting.    12/08/09

All in all an interesting contrast to PMSEIC. [More]

 

Britain's House of Commons Innovation, Universities, Science and Skills Select Committee Reports on "Students and Universities".    10/08/09

    Its 109 recommendations received mixed reviews as it called for "a change of culture at the top in higher education" and accused universities of "defensive complacency". [More]

 

Are Your Cockroaches Maladjusted?    10/08/09

    The avowed purpose of the Ig Nobel awards is stated as: "The Ig Nobel Prizes honour achievements that first make people laugh, and then make them think." [More]

 

US Senate Confirms Geneticist Francis Collins as Director of NIH.    10/08/09 [More]

 

Inaugural Meeting of US President Obama's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST).    06/08/09

    The Council is expected to address issues including energy and environment, science education, health information technology, innovation, and international security. [More]

 

Commercialisation of Public Sector Research "Has Become a Cargo Cult".    05/08/09

    Universities' commercialisation activity comes at the cost of broad knowledge transfer in the public interest. [More]

 

The Faith of the Proposed Director of the NIH.    04/08/09

     Francis Collins claims to demonstrate ďa consistent and profoundly satisfying harmonyĒ between 21st-century science and evangelical Christianity. [More]

 

Call for Bids for a Share of $550 Million in Funding to Improve Infrastructure for the Benefit of Students and the Environment.    04/08/09

    What remains to be dealt with is the staffing of our universities to make significant use of the facilities to be funded. [More

 

Go8 Makes 1957 Murray Report on Australian Universities Available Online.    04/08/09 [More]

 

University of Melbourne's Economic Response Program.    03/08/09

    Last week The University of Melbourne announced its response to the economic crisis it was facing as a result of the global economic recession. [More]

 

ARC Looks to Revising Peer Review.    01/08/09

    At a meeting in Canberra last Thursday, the ARC's CEO got together with deputy vice-chancellors for research to discuss, at least in outline, the reforms the ARC has in mind. [More