The Birmingham Brief

The Birmingham Brief - intelligent thought on policy issues.

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Thursday 2nd April 2015

'Toilet-seat head' amphibian boosts catalogue of Triassic curiosities

Description
The Triassic, which lasted from 252 to 200 million years ago, is not a geological period that looms large in the public consciousness. It lacks the Hollywood glamour of the Jurassic, and sadly none of its cast is as iconic as stars of the Cretaceous such as Tyrannosaurus rex. Yet, among palaeontologists the Triassic is renowned, and with good reason.
Date:
Thursday 2nd April 2015
Categories:
International, Life and Environmental Sciences, Research
Thursday 19th March 2015

Sustainable, clean cold is the paradigm shift the changing world needs

Description
Cooling is a vital foundation of our modern society. Without it, the supply of food, medicine and data would simply break down. As air conditioning, it is also the key enabler for the new urban global hubs such as Dubai. And of course, cold is essential for many super-critical technologies, as well as freezing and powdering materials for recycling and easy disposal.
Date:
Thursday 19th March 2015
Categories:
Engineering and Physical Sciences, Research
Thursday 30th October 2014

Education and awareness needed to combat 'global epidemic' of liver disease

Description
Despite significant advances in our knowledge of how to diagnose and treat chronic liver disease, we are currently experiencing a global epidemic in cases. In Europe alone, 29 million people suffer from chronic liver disease, and this rapid upward trend is reproduced in England, where liver disease is one of the leading causes of premature mortality.
Date:
Thursday 30th October 2014
Categories:
Medical and Dental Sciences, Research
Thursday 23rd October 2014

Drones are here to stay, but the government must do more to ensure greater public acceptance

Description
On 16 October, the Defence Secretary, Michael Fallon, announced that part of the UK Reaper drone fleet would be deployed in Iraq to support coalition efforts against the terror group ISIL. This week, he confirmed they would also be flying surveillance missions over Syria. These events mark the first operational use of UK Reapers outside Afghanistan and represent a significant and timely development in the UK government's stated policy towards 'drone warfare'. The overwhelming vote in the House of Commons in support of military action endorsed the firm legal basis for the UK's use of force in collective defence of a friendly government.
Date:
Thursday 23rd October 2014
Categories:
Research, Social Sciences
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