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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
Since arriving on the island of Guam in the 1940s, the brown tree snake ( Boiga irregularis ) has extirpated native...
An animal rights group known as the Nonhuman Rights Project filed lawsuits in three New York courts this week in an...
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
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Scientific Council Ruckus Continues
12 January 2010 1:16 pm
The war of words surrounding the cuts announced last month by the United Kingdom's Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) continues to rumble on with various groups writing to the science minister and much debate on blogs. The council is responsible for a number of domestic and overseas facilities, subscriptions to major international collaborations such as CERN and the European Southern Observatory, as well as funding researchers in astronomy, particle physics, nuclear physics, and space science. The STFC's budget hole was caused by overcommitment in the past, the declining value of the pound, and the expectation of flat funding from the government. Funding to a large number of projects will be axed as well as a 10% cut in grants and a 25% cut in studentships and fellowships. Nuclear physics was hardest hit.
Now the five professors who headed the subject panels that prioritized all the projects have written an open letter to science minister Paul Drayson registering their "dismay" at the outcome.
Last week, the STFC's director of science programs, John Womersley, defended the cuts, followed this week by a blistering critique from Brian Cox, a particle physicist from the University of Manchester. Before Christmas, Drayson also received missives from 20 members of the UK Nuclear Physics Heads of Groups Committee, and from Nuclear Physics European Collaboration Committee, signed by 28 prominent European chemists.