The Reporter
Issue 488, 24 February 2003
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In the news

Work by Dr Dionisius Agius to piece together Arabic texts written on ostrich eggs (Reporter 486) gained coverage in the UK and abroad. The Yorkshire Post wrote that the sample of the writing from the medieval period is ‘unique’. On BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio Midlands and BBC Radio Leeds, Dr Agius described how the eggs, found on the Egyptian Red Sea coast at Quseir al-Qadim were being reconstructed and interpreted. The story also featured in Arabic international newspaper Asharq al-Awsat, Nature and on Discovery Channel in Canada.

Professor Tony May from transport studies joined Agenda on BBC News 24 to explain the likely impact of congestion charges, before their introduction in London.

The formal announcement of government proposals for funding higher education had ‘something in it for everyone’ said University Vice-Chancellor Sir Alan Wilson, talking on the BBC One O’clock News. He continued: “There’s a lot of pain, like the student debt, and we’re all going to have think through how it’s going to work.” Education correspondent James Westhead visited Leeds and spoke to staff and students about the proposed changes.

Biologist Dr Tom Treganza’s discovery of the first live male blanket octopus (Reporter 487) was covered by the Daily Telegraph and the Yorkshire Post.

As tension grows between the US and Europe over Iraq, Professor Sasha Roseneil joined BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour to discuss the effectiveness of peace movements and the involvement of women in anti-war groups.

As Dr Hans Blix prepared his report on Iraq’s weapons capabilities, chemical and biological warfare expert Professor Alastair Hay outlined his views on the situation in the Yorkshire Evening Post and the Guardian. In response to suggestions that American forces in Iraq could use chemical agents banned under international law Professor Hay said: “Surely this war against Iraq is to stop the use of those weapons, not about also using them.”

Researchers from biomedical sciences have identified the protein that helps sperm move. The role of the protein dynein was published in Nature and gained coverage in national and local media, including the Financial Times, the Sun, Yorkshire Post and BBC news online.

Colour chemist Dr Jim Nobbs joined BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss the psychology of colour following the decision at Uplands Manor Primary School in the West Midlands not to use red ink for marking.

 

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