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So They Say

Verbatim excerpts from the media on the conduct of science. Beware Mathematicians! …scientists should always oppose the appointment of pure mathematicians to head scientific committees and institutions. Sir John Kingman [the mathematician appointed to report to the U.K. government on the teaching of English] was formerly director of the SERC, and Sir Peter Swinnerton-Dyer is the present head of the University Grants Committee. Mathematicians tend instinctively to view research as being don

The Scientist Staff
Verbatim excerpts from the media on the conduct of science.

Beware Mathematicians!

…scientists should always oppose the appointment of pure mathematicians to head scientific committees and institutions. Sir John Kingman [the mathematician appointed to report to the U.K. government on the teaching of English] was formerly director of the SERC, and Sir Peter Swinnerton-Dyer is the present head of the University Grants Committee. Mathematicians tend instinctively to view research as being done with a pad and pencil, or with sand and a stick, and without expensive equipment. Indeed, recently Sir Peter has seemed resigned to the loss of astronomy and high-energy physics as subjects of excellence in Britain. Beware mathematicians.
—Stanley Alderson
Letter to the Editor
New Scientist, p. 69
February 12, 1987

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