Today's news

February 24, 2003

British Museum director vows to keep Marbles
The Elgin Marbles should never be returned to Greece, according to British Museum director Neil MacGregor. He said at the weekend that he was terminating "substantive discussions" over the sculptures shown at the museum. Last autumn, Greece intensified its campaign to have the Marbles returned to their place of origin, and had even started to build a museum at the Acropolis to house them in time for the Olympics in Athens next year.

Heart patients to trial stem cell transplant
A revolutionary technique that uses adult stem cells to repair the damage caused by a heart attack is about to begin trials in Europe. Doctors will use stem cells taken from patients' bodies and infused into their hearts to restore lost function. After preliminary trials in 30 patients in Germany, in which no damaging side-effects were recorded, cardiologists plan a full-scale controlled trial on more than 300 patients at 33 centres in Europe.

Pioneering scientist erased by Newton
As the tercentenary of the death of Robert Hooke (1635-1703) approaches on March 3, conferences are planned in Oxford and Gresham College, London, to discuss his vast contribution to science. Historians are to discuss how he was the victim of an attempt by Sir Isaac Newton to erase his contribution to history. There is even a suggestion that when Newton was president of the Royal Society he was involved in the disappearance of Hooke's portrait.
(Daily Telegraph)

Yale does it better than Oxford
Commentary: "Sir Geoffrey Holland thinks that universities should be more like supermarkets. In that case, with any luck, someone will bid for them. Why join the queue to buy Safeway when you could put together a portfolio of rebadged polytechnics, or even obscure Oxford colleges, crying out for rationalisation? This is just the kind of imperfect market that Yale would love to exploit. It might even cure our own great universities of relying on their paymasters. Yale knows better than that."
(Daily Telegraph)

The rival candidates for chancellor of Oxford
Brief portraits of Lord Neill of Bladen, Chris Patten and Sandi Toksvig

Student admissions must be decided on merit
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