Universities go nuclear with £6m research boost
British research councils today announced a £6 million effort to increase nuclear expertise at UK universities - and to make the technology a more acceptable energy source. It is the funding bodies' single largest commitment to fission reactor research for more than 30 years. The four-year programme aims not only to do research that could make nuclear power more attractive, but to train a new generation of engineers for an industry suffering a shortage of recruits.
Manchester to enter partnership with IBM
Manchester University will sign an agreement tomorrow with the information technology giant IBM to do joint research and teaching. The signing of the "memorandum of understanding" will mark the beginning of a strategic partnership that will see the university receive advice and consultancy from the firm, and let IBM tap into the university's research capacity and graduates. The deal is part of the university's 10-year plan, developed after the merger of Manchester University and the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology, to become a world-leading university by 2015.
Honorary degree for president of Malawi
The controversial leader of Malawi is to be awarded an honorary degree by a Scottish university during his visit to the country, it was announced yesterday. The president, Bingu wa Mutharika, who faces impeachment charges in his home country, will accept the award at Strathclyde University on Friday.
Iannucci to be Oxford professor
Comedy writer Armando Iannucci is to become an Oxford University professor, it was announced today. Iannucci, co-creator of nightmare radio host Alan Partridge, is to occupy the university's visiting chair in broadcast media for the next academic year. One of a number of posts paid for from an endowment by Rupert Murdoch, the News International visiting professorship of broadcast media was first held in 1998/99 by the then Channel Five chief David Elstein, and subsequently by figures including film-maker Roger Graef and journalist Stewart Purvis.
Oxford BioMedica seeks £30m for cancer drug trials
Oxford BioMedica, the speculative biotechnology company formed out of the Oxford University a decade ago, is talking to fund managers about a fund-raising to pay for large-scale trials of a cancer treatment. The company has begun meetings in the City, and observers say it will be looking for between £20 million and £30 million to ensure it can continue its cutting-edge development work.
Attractive women are more than just a pretty face
The more fertile a woman, the more attractive she is to men, scientists claim today. For many years, scientists believed that when lovers gaze at each other they are merely using facial clues - large eyes, small nose, large lips and so on - to check that their prospective mate has high "fitness" and can efficiently pass their genes to the next generation. The female sex hormone oestrogen was thought to be the mediator of beauty, which advertises health and fecundity. Now researchers at the University of St Andrews have shown for the first time that women with higher levels of oestrogen do indeed have more attractive faces.
The Daily Telegraph, The Independent, New Scientist, The Scotsman, The Guardian
Regarding Oxford's new governors.