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Science
THE MATERIAL WORLD
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Thursday 16:30-17:00
Quentin Cooper reports on developments across the sciences. Each week scientists describe their work, conveying the excitement they feel for their research projects.
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Listen to 4 May
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QUENTIN COOPER
Quentin Cooper
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Thursday 4 May 2006
An entry for the Clifton Crossing Competition
A Clifton Crossing Competition entry

Brunel Bridge

The civil engineer, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, was undoubtedly a brilliant designer and fearless entrepreneur. He won the commission in 1831 to build the Clifton Suspension Bridge across the Avon Gorge in Bristol.

Critics doubted it would ever be built, but the result was a triumph. Now the Clifton Crossing Competition is being re-staged to celebrate Brunel's bicentenary.

Quentin Cooper is joined this week by Professor Colin Taylor from the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Bristol, and Anthony Oliver, Editor of New Civil Engineer magazine, to discuss the competition for today's engineering minds.

Politics of Science

What effect does the government have on the public's perception of science? Is the cherry-picking of science stunting scientific growth?

Do the public understand science and the factors that shape science policy? How much should they be involved in science policy decisions?

Dr Michael Stebbins, author of Sex, Drugs and DNA, and Dr David Demeritt of King's College London, talk to Quentin about the behind-the-scenes debates between politicians and scientists regarding the most contentious subjects of the day, such as stem cell research and bio-terrorism.
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