I just saw a tweet from Lord Drayson that said “helping my children with their homework now I have a bit more time”. I imagine his garden will get spruced up too.
So now there is a new Government, all our troubles will be over right ? The Problem of UK Physics Will Be Solved ! Hmmm. Thinks. Remembers last time there was a Conservative Government. Astronomy budget plummeted year on year. Ahh. Any jobs in America ?
But actually there seems to be a mood of cautious optimism reverberating through the scientific blogosphere and twitterscape. The new Boss of BIS is the man who should have been Chancellor, the eminently sensible Vince Cable – and the new Minister for Universities and Science is David “Two Brains” Willets. His appointment was warmly welcomed by BBC News, by Times Online , by New Scientist, and by Research Fortnight. Today the New Scientist S-Word blog had the first interview with Willetts.
I guess its early days, but he seems to be making sensible noises so far. Thinks blue skies research is important, isn’t keen on the “impact” agenda, and says we need a “stable framework”.
Sounds pretty sensible for science in general…. but it doesn’t follow, I’m afraid, that the fortunes of astronomy and particle physics will reverse. I don’t think our problem has been that Paul Drayson thought astronomy was rubbish.
Anyway. About five hours sleep then I am off to Canada for the twice yearly IVOA shindig.