The Birmingham Brief

The Birmingham Brief - intelligent thought on policy issues.

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Thursday 7th November 2013

Engineering: skills or qualifications?

Engineering: skills or qualifications?
Description
Not a week seems to pass without the national media reporting a shortage of engineers. This is not a criticism; it is in fact an achievement. What was once a very much overlooked issue is now quite rightly receiving the profile and attention it deserves. A strong, sustainable supply of high-quality engineers is essential if the UK is to meet its current and future skills needs for economic growth.
Date:
Thursday 7th November 2013
Categories:
Engineering and Physical Sciences
Tuesday 8th October 2013

What has the Higgs Boson ever done for me?

What has the Higgs Boson ever done for me?
Description
Nobody working in the subject was really surprised that this year's Nobel prize for physics was awarded to Peter Higgs; most of the speculation was over who he would share it with. Yet when Higgs and others first put forward their ideas in the mid 1960s, even specialists could have been forgiven for thinking that they were just plain crazy.
Date:
Tuesday 8th October 2013
Categories:
Engineering and Physical Sciences, Research
Thursday 5th September 2013

Chemical warfare: It's nothing new

Chemical warfare: It's nothing new
Description
As millions flee Syria and the international community continues to consider its response to claims that chemical weapons may have been unleashed on civilians there; it is worth reflecting that in the science of modern warfare, truly, there is nothing new under the sun.
Date:
Thursday 5th September 2013
Categories:
Engineering and Physical Sciences
Wednesday 14th August 2013

Social media: why the case for teaching digital literacy is so compelling

Description
As a parent, I can only start to imagine the pain, grief and suffering of the family of Hannah Smith, who committed suicide recently after being bullied on the ask.fm website. Almost daily, fresh headlines emerge about social media sites like Twitter being used to issue threats of rape, violence and murder. My visceral, emotional, immediate reaction is much like everyone else: something must be done.
Date:
Wednesday 14th August 2013
Categories:
Engineering and Physical Sciences, Research
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