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Shaping capabilities, but not maths yet

EPSRC has announced the next set of decisions under its controversial “Shaping capabilities” programme. Under this, according to a story in Times Higher Education, the Research Council:

has divided its portfolio into 111 subject areas and is mulling over whether to increase, maintain or reduce funding for each of them according to their research excellence and existing capacity, as well as their national importance.

The first round of decisions provoked controversy last July when “EPSRC decided that it would not accept applications for research fellowships in any area of the mathematical sciences except statistics and applied probability, until further notice”.

Now, according to Times Higher Education, the second set of decisions are confined to energy, ICT and engineering. Most areas will be maintained, but seven will grow. The only reductions are in biological informatics, and in hydrogen and alternative energy.

EPSRC has deferred until the end of March more decisions on which areas of mathematics and physical sciences will grow or shrink.

Times Higher Education: EPSRC rolls out 31 shapes but puts off decisions on the difficult subjects.

Math/Maths 86: Complex Pony Tails

A new episode of the Math/Maths Podcast has been released.

A conversation about mathematics between the UK and USA from This week Samuel and Peter spoke about: The Recent Difficulties with RSA; Do we need a maths museum?; Brian Schmidt’s Mathematical Arguement; IBM claims most PhD mathematicians in its employ; Maths grads teaching alert; John Nash’s Letters to the NSA; The mathematical equation that caused the banks to crash; Rapunzel’s Number: Science behind ponytail revealed; EPSRC Shaping Capabilities; Maths Jam; & more.

Get this episode: “Math/Maths 86: Complex Pony Tails