Best of Nature Network for Monday, July 7: Nobel Laureates in Berlin, Success in Science, and Science and Politics

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A summary of the week’s best discussions on Nature Network.

With over 70 members, the Berlin group on Nature Network is gaining momentum. The group even has its own online calendar of upcoming NN Berlin events. The group’s administrator, Philipp Selenko, is organizing a series of dinners to take place during the International Congress of Genetics 2008 in Berlin this month, featuring speakers from the Congress. Eric Lander, Oliver Smithies, Mario Capecchi, and Elisa Izaurralde are among the speakers expected to attend.

As a graduate student, Nuruddeen Lewis has had ample opportunity to reflect on how science is done. He shares his reflections on the importance of reading scientific literature, balancing life and lab, and novel approaches to reading while exercising on his blog, Lab Daze. In his latest post, Nuruddeen asks readers for their Most Important Tips to be Successful in Science. Responses range from the philosophical to the practical.

In the Nature Network Italy group, Marco Boscolo asks, “…is politics a world apart from science?” The discussion addresses the relationship between science and politics in Italy and beyond.

The Consortium of Functional Genomics (CFG) is a “large research initiative… formed to define the paradigms by which protein-carbohydrate interactions mediate cell communication.” The consortium is made up of seven scientific cores, including mouse transgenics and microarray, with participating investigators based all over the world. The CFG has recently formed a series of groups on Nature Network in order to ease communication between consortium members.

DIYBio is a Boston-based group which hopes to create an “Institution for the Amateur,” devoted to promoting scientific experimentation by the general public. In a Q&A with Nature Network Boston, one of the group’s organizers speaks about the ethics of scientific experimentation outside of an academic lab, proposed projects, and plans for a future biotech workshop.

If you’d like to nominate a conversation you’ve read or taken part in on Nature Network for next week’s roundup, please email us at network [at]


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