The majority of last week’s meetings were ‘internal’, mainly around planning for future activities, but I did join a very useful discussion with representatives of the Russell Group about the implementation of Open Access, a subject of increasing interest.

We had a very fruitful bilateral meeting (my first formal one) with Professor Ian Boyd, the new Defra Chief Scientific Adviser, covering a raft of topics of mutual interest in all areas of agriculture and environment, and a separate one including NERC Chief Executive Duncan Wingham with whom we are working up a number of joint programmes.

I was also able to attend part of our Bioscience for Society Strategy Panel meeting, where topics included a discussion of the recent Nuffield Council on Bioethics report on “Emerging Biotechnologies” and of our recent pilot public dialogue on Basic Bioscience Underpinning Health.

I would also draw attention to announcements on bids for our Flexible Interchange Programme, and for some small changes to our Responsive Mode programme (that means that we need to put the next one back by a week).

I enjoyed an OpEd on the increasing variety of research outputs (beyond papers) that it is useful to track (and the irony of the relevant license by which it was published), a talk on a trek across Africa, and some local culture, I was also reminded of two papers analysing the difficulties of maintaining digital tools and resources.

Other online links included a ‘genome of the month’ slot, an addictively funny twitter stream nominally about how science is ‘really’ done (and its originator’s blog), a fascinating infographic on “emotions for which there are no English words”, one on gender/subject differences in academic publishing, and an attractive piece on beautiful scientific images.

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