Britain losing next generation of great minds....

Discussion in 'United Kingdom' started by SithLordDarthRichie, Oct 3, 2009.

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  1. SithLordDarthRichie London CR

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    Oct 3, 2003
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    This week Stephen Hawking stepped down from the nation's most illustrious science chair - Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at Cambridge.

    As a committee of University boffins decide on his replacement, leading Physicists worry that Britain risks losing the next generation of great minds.

    The government has put pressure on Universities to focus more on money-making projects rather then deep intellectual ones, such as the Unified Field Theory that Professor Hawking has been working on for so many years.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2009/oct/02/search-for-stephen-hawkings-successor


    So, are we doomed to fall further behind the rest of the world in terms of scientific discovery? Or will our great minds blossom anyway?
  2. Moylesy Jedi Master

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    Jul 4, 2001
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    As the majority of scientists at our Universities are Indian or Chinese I can't see how it matters.
  3. SithLordDarthRichie London CR

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    Oct 3, 2003
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    Surely that is part of the point, that we need more home-grown brains to lead world fields of science. This country has a grand history of making landmarks in science and some of history's most renound minds have been British.

    There is a difference also between being a lecturer at a University and working in science at one. Hawking himself as far as I'm aware does not teach very much if at all, he is simply at Cambridge as a Physicist in order to use their facilities for his research. The minds behind closed doors who work on many great things are the really important ones, not all the apparently foreign lecturing professors.
  4. chrisfree Jedi Knight

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    Apr 28, 2006
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    In these last few years under the Labour government university degrees were two a penny. If in this time of bloom there were not enough British students taking science places than I think the problem lies in the lower-schools in creating an environment for scientific interest. We can blame whoever we want, but when getting a degree is seen as something ordinary then no wonder pupils will go for the lowest common denominator to get one.

    At least in this country, even if the places fill up with Asian and Chinese pupils, it's not like my country, Hungary, where there is interest in science subjects but there are no jobs, either of interest or of fiscal rewards, to accomodate the graduates. So they go abroad...

    Perhaps the time has come for celebrating history and other nations to be in the spotlight. The tide will change eventually, as it always has.
  5. SithLordDarthRichie London CR

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    Oct 3, 2003
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    I had someone from Hungary on my Degree course.

    I agree that Science is something that must be made more interesting at lower levels in education, along with Maths & English. So many people now go for the flashy practical subjects like Media & photography ast A-Level rather then Science or Maths.

    Language is the same, when I did French at Secondary School it was compulsary for GCSE level. When my sister got to that stage it could be dropped after year 9, that hardly encourages people to continue with a language.

    I don't entirely agree that degrees are "two a penny". University is very expensive and degree courses last a number of years. Doing dissertations is nothing short of madness, I don't think any regular larry can just go and get a degree.
    OK they aren't as important for getting work as they once were, but they aren't easy to get.
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