British scientists need to adopt a positive tone

This is a shortened version of an Editorial in Nature ( 463, 402; 28 January 2010), which is free to access online. On 11 January, a coalition of 20 leading British research universities published an editorial in The Guardian newspaper warning of impending calamity. If the spending cuts being proposed by the government are implemented, the authors asserted, the nation’s entire higher-education system, eight centuries in the making, could be undone in just six months. Such alarmist statements have worked before. In an ordinary budget year, cries of falling skies and loss of leadership can pressure politicians to shift resources 


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