Short items

  • A UK government report published by the Office of science and technology says that relative to investment in research the UK produces around nine per cent of the world’s PhDs and papers, and achieves 12 per cent of the world’s academic citations. Research productivity within the UK research community is the highest of any G8 country and ranks third globally. The report, PSA target metrics for the UK research base, was welcomed by Research Councils UK. 
  • The Royal Society, UK, is looking for a new sponsor for its science books prize. Aventis has sponsored the prize for the past 18 years, and the most recent winner of the ?10,000 prize was David Bodanis, for his book Electric universe - how electricity switched on the modern world
  • Japan is offering a major prize to reward outstanding efforts to improve health in Africa. The Noguchi prize will be awarded to medical researchers or healthcare experts. Japan’s prime minister Junichiro Koizumi said the prize would be ’no less major than the Nobel prize’, which is worth about $1.4 million (?730,000). 
  • The BBSRC is inviting proposals for bids from researchers involved in the discovery of small molecules that have specific activities in biological systems. Only investigations aimed at understanding fundamental biological processes will be considered, for the five year grants. The closing date for applications is 5 July. 
  • Preparations for the 2008 research assessment exercise (RAE) in the UK continue with a letter from Hefce to all higher education institutions outlining how they should report on the estimated value of research council facility time, research council allocations paid in 2005 as transitional funding for the introduction of full economic costing, and research income by research group.