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SAN FRANCISCO—One year ago the U.S. space program came to an abrupt and shocking halt. As the remains of the Space Shuttle Challenger plummeted into the sea, an already tenuous and drifting Space and Earth Science Program reeled under the shock wave. While NASA says none of its 22,800 employees worldwide have been laid off, the scientific programs, both at NASA facilities and elsewhere, have unquestionably been affected severely. Previous decisions to stretch out and delay flight projects

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Panel To Rank U.K. Priorities

By | January 26, 1987

LONDON—Industrial, government and scientific leaders here are about to launch a new effort to decide how best to spend the U.K.'s research dollars. The tripartite forum—as yet unnamed—is expected to be announced shortly by the government, which hopes to attract a well-known industrialist as its chairman. The idea for such a group came from the government's Advisory Council for Applied Research and Development (ACARD). The Council, a group of senior industrial and government res

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Physicists Cite Gender Bias

January 26, 1987

LONDON—More than half of the U.K. Institute of Physics's female members believe they have been discriminated against when applying for jobs. According to a survey by the Institute, many have suffered "patronizing attitudes, lack of rapport with male colleagues and chauvinistic or sexist remarks" and feel that they need to perform twice as well if they are to be considered as able as men. Of the Institute's 11,733 members, only 672 are women—but 63 percent of them completed the questi

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Physics Revisited

By | January 26, 1987

The Birth of Particle Physics. Laurie M. Brown and Lillian Hoddeson, eds. Cambridge University Press, New York, 1986. 448 pp., illus. $18.95 PB. In most instances one would welcome a new edition of a symposium held nearly seven years ago about as much as one would welcome a subscription to a newspaper seven years old. This book, however, is a valuable exception. The symposium, which was held at the Fermi Laboratory in May of 1980, focused on the history of modern particle physics and such a his

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Protecting the Myth of the Ivory Tower

By | January 26, 1987

If nothing else, Roger L. Geiger's review of my book about McCarthyism and the universities, No Ivory Tower, shows how controversial the topic remains (The Scientist, December 15, 1986, p. 25). In his attempt to sustain the myth that the academic community protected its members from McCarthyism, Geiger distorts the evidence. His seemingly precise discussion of the main academic freedom cases of the 1950s alludes to some, but not all, of the dismissals noted in the book (themselves only a sample

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Quantitative History of Science

By | January 26, 1987

Little Science… And Beyond. Derek J. de Solla Price. Columbia University Press, New York, 1986. $35 HB, $14.95 PB. It is four years since the death of Derek J. de Solla Price and now it is clear that he was the founder and inspirational leader of the field we call scientometrics. This book is an updated and expanded version of perhaps the most significant and primordial text in the quantitative study of science, Price's 1963 book Little Science, Big Science. Included in this new volume are

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Recycling Scientists into Science Teachers

By | January 26, 1987

Ben Schrader wants to be a high school science teacher in Houston. The 55-year-old chemical engineer plans to reach his goal with the help of a new cooperative program, between the Chevron Corporation and three universities, that addresses both the problem of unemployment in the oil industry and the growing shortage of science teachers throughout the nation's secondary schools. Getting a good education has always been important to Schrader, who expects his youngest child, a high school senior, t

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Revolving Door in Biotech?

January 26, 1987

WASHINGTON—Employees in the biotechnology industry are enjoying more salary increases, cash incentive programs and educational assistance, yet the annual turnover rate for some positions is as high as 23 percent, according to a recent survey conducted by Radford Associates for the Industrial Biotechnology Association. The Biotechnology Compensation and Benefits Survey collected information from 126 biotechnology companies based primarily in the United States and Canada. Salary increases we

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Sakharov Release May Bolster Ties with West, Say Activists

By | January 26, 1987

WASHINGTON—The release of Andrei Sakharov from internal exile in Gorky could lead to improved relations between Soviet scientists and their colleagues around the world, say several scientists active in the human rights movement. The decision December 16 by Soviet party leader Mikhail Gorbachev to allow Sakharov to return to Moscow and to continue both his scientific and human rights activities is generally viewed as a bold move that deserves applause from scientists everywhere. What is les

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Scientists in SDI Debate Look for Middle Ground

By | January 26, 1987

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.—University of New Mexico physicist Charles Bickel admits to being surprised by his encounter last summer with Roger Hagengruber, vice president for exploratory systems at Sandia National Laboratories. "I had suspected we were further apart on SDI," he said. The revelation came as the two physicists participated in the Trinity Conference last June in Santa Fe. Before a public forum and assisted by a mediator, they engaged in a process called "dialoguing." After stating the

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