Physicist Brian Greene will talk today with Leonard Lopate on WNYC about how the US can regain its leadership in science and technology. It’s an interesting time to be having this conversation — funding of basic physics research is much in the news lately.
Yesterday, an anonymous donor gave $5 million to Fermilab, outside Chicago, which has been laying off staff after its budget was slashed by Congress. And in the Times of London this weekend, Neil Turok blasts the UK government for cutting funds that support basic research in the sciences. Turok is leaving Cambridge to take a job at the Perimeter Institute in Ontario, a research center for theoretical physics founded by the inventor of the BlackBerry. (Update on 6/1/08: The week before Brian Greene gave this talk, Lawrence Berkeley Labs laid off more than 400 people, including physicists, engineers and chemists — sparking more fears of a US “brain drain.”)