Eyjafjallajokull – Bad for Travel but Great for Science

While the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull in Iceland is bad news for some people, it is actually quite interesting from an emerging technologies point of view, and bordering on fascinating if, like me, you somehow managed to shoehorn a big chunk of geology and geomorphology into you education (It’s a frightening thought, but I could have ended up as a geographer!) as well as …

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A Concerted Effort To Save British Science

The past week has seen some strong and effective lobbying from the scientific community, naturally worried about some rather dim politician seeing the science budget as being available to plunder, with the next government having to deal with any consequences. It’s therefore good to see various former science ministers, and the Royal Society making high profile interventions and spelling out …

Geoengineering – Engineering an All Purpose Political Smokescreen?

There’s nothing like the mention of Geoengineering to get environmental groups even madder than putting a wasps nest down their trousers and beating them with a cricket bat, and for good reason. The idea that we could do something about climate change that didn’t involve re-engineering the political system would mean that we don’t have to live in caves, grow …

Strategic Geopolitical Trends – From Spooks to Nanotech

The UK Ministry of Defence released its latest ‘Global Strategic Trends – Out to 2040‘ study last month, and it’s a good read (even for non spooks) covering everything from terrorism to to climate change and their impact on geopolitics. The report identifies four key issues, Globalisation, Climate Change, Global Inequality & Innovation which will dominate the next thirty years. The …

Nanotech and Turkey Twizzlers – Really?

The UK’s well known and respected science magazine The Daily Mail has an article by Peter Melchet, Policy Director of the Soil Association who seems to need his head examined for equating nanotechnology with “Turkey Twizzlers,” but I suppose you have to do these things if you write for the tabloids. It’s the usual Daily Mail journalism, take a few …

COP-15 As Reported By Dr Seuss

One of the funniest things I heard over Christmas was Marcus Brigstocke on Radio 4’s Now Show reporting on the COP-15 meeting in the style of Dr Seuss. Anyone who has spent any time working with large international organisations will also appreciate the tragedy.

Happy Birthday James Burke

I always loved James Burke’s double act with Patrick Moore on the Apollo missions, but he really came into his own when he became a science historian, making connections between technological development and its impact. Here he is from 1989, or 2050, looking at the impact of climate on humans and the impact of humans on climate. While the speculation …

All I Want For Christmas Is A Return On My Investment

An early Christmas present? A late Eid or Diwali one? Our latest white paper looks at investing in emerging technologies from a variety of perspectives. At Cientifica we have been working with emerging technologies for fifteen years, whether developing field emission displays in the mid 90’s, or advising governments, companies and the World Economic Forum in recent years. Over this …

Copenhagen – Where’s The Science?

The next couple of weeks will be dominated by the Copenhagen Summit on Climate Change, and probably some nasty brutish debate with science caught somewhere in the middle. While the negotiators fumble towards a compromise that keeps all the vested interests happy while appearing to be taking tough action, I’ll be busy pushing the idea that we should actually do …