Today's news

December 17, 2004

Mother of four with strong views
Ruth Kelly's appointment as Education Secretary has raised the number of women in Cabinet to six - a record. Ms Kelly, 36, has uncompromising views. A strong opponent of abortion and euthanasia, she once told Tony Blair that she could never support stem cell research.
Daily Telegraph

Top-up fee move threatens student teacher recruitment
Universities are to be allowed to charge the full 'top-up' fee of £3,000 to students entering postgraduate teacher training courses, triggering fears that people will be deterred from going into teaching at a time of continued shortages.
The Guardian

Vanunu is elected rector
The nuclear whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu has been elected rector of Glasgow University. His supporters hope that will help his campaign to be allowed to leave Israel, where he is still forbidden from talking to foreigners.
The Guardian

Brain drain fears eased as more Scottish graduates find jobs at home
Fears of a growing Scottish brain drain have been confounded by figures showing that more graduates are finding jobs in Scotland, the Executive said yesterday. In 2003, 80 per cent of students who found jobs straight from a Scottish university did so north of the Border, according to annual figures.
The Scotsman

Mars probe findings get star billing for advances in science
Britain's Beagle 2 might have vanished into the Martian sunset, but discoveries made by American probes to the Red Planet were named yesterday as the most important scientific breakthroughs of the year. New evidence that Mars was once warm, wet and perhaps capable of supporting life has been chosen by the journal Science as the most significant achievement of 2004.
The Times , The Guardian , The Independent

Women in academia lose out by a whisker
A correlation between having a beard and being a professor has been uncovered by scientists, suggesting a reason for discrimination against women in academia. A study of 1,800 male academics has revealed professors are twice as likely as lecturers to have bristles.
Daily Telegraph

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James Fryer illustration (27 July 2017)

It is not Luddism to be cautious about destroying an academic publishing industry that has served us well, says Marilyn Deegan

Jeffrey Beall, associate professor and librarian at the University of Colorado Denver

Creator of controversial predatory journals blacklist says some peers are failing to warn of dangers of disreputable publishers

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Kayaker and jet skiiers

Nazima Kadir’s social circle reveals a range of alternative careers for would-be scholars, and often with better rewards than academia

hole in ground

‘Drastic action’ required to fix multibillion-pound shortfall in Universities Superannuation Scheme, expert warns