Feeds

Physics institute slams Reading over dept closure

'Ill-judged and precipitous'

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The Institute of Physics (IoP) has slammed Reading University's decision to shut its Physics department, saying the closure will waste £5m of public money that the department had attracted in grants and investments.

IoP chief executive Dr Bob Kirby Harris is scheduled to meet with Reading's vice chancellor today to discuss the decision. He is expected to urge Professor Marshall to reconsider and keep the department going.

Professor Peter Main, director of science at the IoP, described the decision to close the department as "ill-judged and precipitous".

"Academics in the department have been successful in attracting over £5m in investment in the last few years – money that will be wasted if the department is forced to close." he said.

He argued that if Reading's physics department was to close it would undermine the country's long-term science strategy, as outlined in the "Next Steps" document published in March 2006.

"How can we have a meaningful long-term strategy when a university vice-chancellor can make a unilateral decision in this way?" he asked. ®

In the last few years, Reading University's physics department has secured the following grants:

  • Centre of excellence for teaching and learning (consortium with Leicester & Open University), total investment £2.4m of which £1m was based at Reading (HEFCE)
  • Ultra Fast Laser Laboratory £1m (HEFCE)
  • Nano science centre £200,000 (Royal Society)
  • Centre for Advanced Microscopy £1.5m (SRIF)
  • Refurbishing undergraduate laboratories £300,000 (SRIF)
  • Current EPSRC contracts with six new grants in physics (since Oct 2005) £1.7m

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
Brit amateur payload set to complete full circle around PLANET EARTH
Ultralight solar radio tracker in glorious 25,000km almost-space odyssey
Boffins spot weirder quantum capers as neutrons take the high road, spin takes the low
Cheshire cat effect see neutrons and their properties walk different paths
NASA Mars rover FINALLY equals 1973 Soviet benchmark
Yet to surpass ancient Greek one, however
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.