Physics on the agenda for Parliament

Next Tuesday will see a debate on the Future of Physics Research (including something on the Science and Technology Funding Council) hosted by the Lib Dem MP Dr Evan Harris (who tweets here).

On the subject, physicist Jon Butterworth fought back against the philosopher Nicholas Maxwell (both of my own University College London) who had written an anti-science piece in the Guardian.

Meanwhile, in New Scientist, Martin Robbins writes of how science is fundamental to our economy and the challenges (more than just economic) that the UK faces. He ends, rather spookily, with the example of my MP Tim Farron as one where his support for antiscientific motions could lose him enough support in a seat he holds by 267 votes if scientists are willing to rise to the challenge of mounting a national fightback in every seat. Just a leaflet showing the proportion of GDP devoted to science and that collected from science on the outside and a concentration on the local economy and science based industry (as well as, if you like, prestige projects like Cassini having a link to an area’s science base) on the inside could help. One that raises ten questions of science and compares candidate’s answers (and MP’s votes) with those of scientific bodies could be another possibility.

Step up to the plate and science really will be on the agenda.


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