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Faraday Institute Newsletter No. 12 - December 2006


Two further important folders on the Faraday Institute web-site ( have been activated this month. The first is the ‘Shop’ Folder that now provides on-line shopping for the CDs and DVDs of our lectures and seminars. All payments are on-line by the secure Protx system which is already much in use for Course registration payments. Soon the first batch of Faraday Papers will also be available in the ‘Shop’ Folder. The second Folder to go active is the Media Helpdesk which provides information to the Media on what the Faraday can offer by way of advice, information and links to experts who can comment on different issues.

The Current Issues Folder now has a brief article posted by Sir John Houghton FRS entitled ‘The Challenge of Global Warming - Global challenges need global solutions’. Sir John (a member of our Advisory Board) has pioneered work in this area and done much to raise public awareness of the issues involved. Those who visit our web-site frequently may also have noticed that a ‘News’ box has appeared on the Home page to highlight recent/future events. The Folders on the left side of the web-pages are now arranged alphabetically by the way.

December saw the first Advisory Board Meeting chaired by Sir Brian Heap FRS (see the web-page for the list of Advisory Board members). Remarkably, nearly all these busy people were able to attend the afternoon of presentations by different Faraday staff members and there was a good time of discussion and exchange of ideas.

The New Year brings with it a very busy schedule of activities for the Faraday Institute. Our first Course of the year is now very soon (‘Introduction to Science & Religion’, 5-7 Jan) and will soon be followed by ‘Science and Religion in Schools’ (30 March – 1 April) and then by ‘God and Physics’ (18-20 May). As always, early registration is recommended to avoid disappointment. As mentioned in our last Newsletter, we are currently printing a Faraday Course 2007 poster (A3 size) for wide distribution. If you would like one or more copies to be sent to you for notice-boards in your vicinity, then please e-mail Bekki Pearce at providing your mailing address and stating how many copies you would like. Faraday Associates and Advisory Board members will receive copies automatically, but if you want more than one copy, please let Bekki know.

Our next CiS-Faraday termly public lecture will be held on 6th March at 5.30 p.m. in the Howard Building, Downing College. This time the event will take the form of a debate between Sir Brian Heap FRS (Cambridge, formerly Foreign Secretary of the Royal Society) and Dr Bill Hurlbut (Stanford, advisor on bioethics to the US President), chaired by Baroness Onora O'Neill, President of the British Academy. This promises to be a lively and informative debate – a date for the new 2007 diaries for all those from the Cambridge area, and something to look forward to watching on-line for those too far away to attend in person. Video and audio recordings will be posted on the Multimedia section of the Faraday web site shortly after the event.

The first Faraday Research Seminar of the new term will be held on Tuesday 30 January at 1.00 p.m. and will be given by Dr Simon Mitton, Fellow of St. Edmund’s College, on the subject ‘A history of cosmologies and their religious contexts’. From now on the Seminars will be held in the Garden Room of the new Brian Heap Building at St. Edmund’s College.

Best wishes

Denis Alexander                                                        Bob White

            [Director, Faraday Institute]                         [Associate Director]