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LU Text

LU Text is published by the Press Office on Fridays during term time and aims to keep you regularly informed of the University's news and developments. To view previous editions see LU Text Archive.

| 16 July 2010 | Issue 487

Contents: news; Lancaster in the news; people; notices; what's on; ads

The University flag is flying at half-mast today to mark the funeral of Elaine Adams, a staff member in the Pre-School Centre, who died last week.


Degree Ceremonies

Over three thousand students have graduated from the University this week in a series of ceremonies attended by family and friends. Honorary degrees were also awarded to five people including the presenter of BBC Top Gear James May and renowned broadcaster Dame Joan Bakewell DBE. The others included the President of the British Medical Association Professor Averil Mansfield CBE, distinguished scientist Professor Kang Shaozhong and Edwin Booth, the head of the regional supermarket chain. Most of them have connections with the North West: James May is an alumnus of Lancaster University while Dame Joan Bakewell, Professor Mansfield and Edwin Booth are all from the region. See here for details of the Honorary Graduates

New car parking policy and subsidised staff bus travel from 1st October 2010

The impact of travel to and from the campus is a key environmental issue. Major changes are being introduced from 1st October 2010 to improve the quality and value for money of alternatives to single-occupancy car travel. The changes are in line with the objectives of the new University Travel Plan (2010 – 2015), which is due to be launched later this year. There will be some significant changes to car parking affecting staff, students, contractors and visitors. Heavily subsidised annual Unirider bus passes will be available for University staff that choose not to purchase a car parking permit next year and travel choices for University staff will be made through the Flexible Benefits system. More information, including full details of the new parking policies and arrangements, can be found on the Facilities Travel website. Click here for information on Bus Services.

Chancellor visits new Sports Centre site

Lancaster University’s Chancellor, Sir Christian Bonington CVO CBE DL, was on campus to visit the site where the new £20m sports centre is being built. The 6,000 sq metre centre, which is visible from the A6 , will open in Summer 2011. Distinguished mountaineer Sir Christian said that the new Sports Centre will offer ‘something for everyone’ and he particularly hoped that climbers, schools and young people will enjoy using the new indoor climbing wall and bouldering cave, which he helped to design. Full story.

Launch of The LRET Nuclear Engineering Lab

A new chemistry laboratory which will be used to research novel science and technologies to assist nuclear decommissioning and the development of new nuclear power was officially opened on the 14th July, marked by a special event which brought together leading nuclear experts to discuss ways to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons. Full story.

New device to detect arthritis by listening to a patient’s knees

Researchers have moved a step closer to producing a new device for GPs to detect osteoarthritis and monitor its progression by listening to the noises emitted by their knees. A team at Lancaster University and UCLan, led by Professor John Goodacre (SHM) and Professor Lik-Kwan Shark, have found that a technique called acoustic emission - routinely used in the engineering industry to detect unsafe buildings and bridges - can also be used to pinpoint joint degeneration. A two-year study involving 50 people showed that the sound waves made by the knees of healthy people were different to those with osteoarthritis of the knee. In the study, microphones were attached to the knees of patients and healthy controls, and the noises emanating from their knees were measured as they stood up from a sitting position five times. The research has been published in clinical and medical engineering journals and will be presented at the British Society for Rheumatology conference in April. Full story.

BigDog Interactive give high-tech gadgets the vintage look

Lancaster University spin out digital art company BigDog Interactive (BDI) - based in Lancaster University’s Centre of Excellence for ICT, InfoLab21 - has exhibited a selection of high tech objects that look Victorian at the first UK Vintage Computer Festival . The installation consisted of three artefacts, the iPhonograph, a news ‘ticker’ and a top hat time piece. The iPhonograph is a hand cranked MP3 player embedded in brass and wood. The Ticker is a digital news ticker which uses clockwork, light and optics to present a scrolling ticker-tape of the latest news, hot off the wire. The top hat is a high-tech chronograph (or timepiece) for the discerning Victorian gentleman. Full Story.

Pupils experience world-leading Science and Technology at Lancaster

More than 180 students from schools across the region visited Lancaster University for a Science and Technology taster day. The year 12s met scientists, attended lectures and got hands on in sessions across campus designed to give students a flavour of some of the current research and teaching happening at Lancaster. Over 500 pupils visit the campus each year from 30 schools and colleges. Full story.

Northern Lights talk by astrophysicist

Pupils from Bolton School were given a fascinating lecture on the Northern Lights by Dr Jim Wild from Lancaster University. The presentation to the Sixth Form boys and girls was the second annual lecture organised by the University's UK Student Recruitment Office through a partnership with Bolton School, which is one of the largest independent schools in the country. Dr Wild is a lecturer with the Space Plasma Environment and Radio Science Group at the Department of Communication Systems at InfoLab21. His research investigates the physics behind the aurora borealis, the impact of space weather on human technology and the interaction between the Martian atmosphere and the interplanetary environment. He talked about the physics behind the Northern Lights and also their effect on art and culture.

Lancaster in the news

Lancaster in the news - The Press Office monitors all media coverage and this is a selection of stories from the past week including Professor John Goodacre (SHM) talking about his arthritis research on BBC news online and Professor Paul Farley (FASS) on BBC's Radio 3 and 4.


The first ever College of Social Work has appointed a Lancaster University academic and a former director of social work as joint chairs. Professor of Applied Social Science Corinne May-Chahal and Maurice Bates, formerly interim director of children's services at North East Lincolnshire Council, will take up their posts on August 1. Both are qualified social workers. Professor May-Chahal has over 34 years of experience as a social work practitioner, educator and leader. She has substantial experience in child welfare policy and practice including work with the NSPCC on the first national prevalence study of child maltreatment and several European funded research collaborations. Full Story.

Professor Sheila Payne (SHM) attended The Stroke Association’s Summer Parliamentary Reception at the House of Commons, on 13th July to meet with MPs and Lords to talk about her research to improve end of life care in stroke.

Dr Antti Sakari Saario (LICA) has been awarded a 4-week residency as part of The Artists' Enclave: a multi-disciplinary international residency programme for artists at I-Park in rural East Haddam, Connecticut, USA.During the residency Dr Saario will be working on a new site-specific sound art project that will be installed at I-Park, and on an original fixed media composition. For more about I-Park, please see:

‘The Politics of Unrecognised States’, a research project led by Dr Nina Caspersen (Politics), has received a grade of 'outstanding' from the ESRC. The referees praised the project’s empirical and theoretical originality, its high-level of analysis and impressive outputs, and argued that it delivered exceptional value for money. Project website:


New LICA Building – work in Lancaster Square

On Monday 19th July the LICA contractors will be carrying out service connection works in Lancaster Square, next to the Round House. The work is expected to last 10 days. It is not expected to disrupt any services in the surrounding area. If you have any queries about the work please call Senior Project Manager, Suzanne Parkinson on the Facilities Helpdesk 01524 593333.

Security Training

The security of University information e.g. student personal data, is a vital concern to us all. To help you and all other members of the University keep data secure, ISS has published a series of short video tutorials on information security. Follow the link to further details and the video tutorials:

Internet Connection Test

On the 28th of July 2010 between 16:45 and 17:00 Canlman (our Internet Service Provider), will be carrying out an IP resilience failover test between the Canlman and Janet networks (which provide our link with the Internet). This is in order for Canlman to fulfil their contractual obligations to Janet(UK). During the test two brief interruptions (less than a second) to our Internet connection may be experienced.

ISS Failover Proving Exercise

On Saturday 24th July ISS are planning a failover exercise on the consolidated resilient infrastructure; the result will be that some university services are not available for periods during the day and should be considered at risk between 9am and 5pm. Details of the affected services will be made available here:

Declaration of philanthropic income 09/10

The University’s HEFCE matched funding claim is currently being prepared. The matched funding scheme allows the University to receive £1 for every £3 donated, up to a maximum of £2.75m over the 3-year period of the scheme – the matched funds are being used to finance the new PhD studentships being introduced this academic year.

In order to ensure that the HEFCE claim is correct, please could you ensure that the Alumni & Development Office has been informed of any income your area has received in the financial year 1 August 2009 to 31 July 2010, that you believe may be philanthropic (e.g. grants or donations). If you are unsure as to whether some income can be classed as philanthropic, please let us know and we can review the details to determine if it can be included in the claim. More details about the matched funding scheme are available here. Deadline for receipt of this information is Friday 1 October 2010 in order that we can process the claim in time. Please contact either: Rachel Davis, ext.94897 or Katharine Robinson in Finance, ext. 93424.

Friends Programme funding available

Application forms can now be obtained from the Alumni and Development Office for funding available under the Lancaster University Friends Programme. Departments, colleges, and individuals can apply for funding (most grants will be in the £2,000 - £5,000 category). The next round of disbursement of funds will take place in September. Applications for funding will need to tie in with the University strategy and fall under at least one of the following categories: Priority Fund, Student Support Fund, or Research & Academic Excellence Fund. Please note: applications from individuals (academic or student) seeking support for tuition, other course fees or personal maintenance costs do not fall into the criteria for Friends Programme funding. Unfortunately we can only allow one application per college and a maximum of five applications per faculty.

The Friends Programme is part of the University's fundraising programme and the funds are made possible by donations from Lancaster alumni. Deadline for applications: 5pm Wednesday 1st September 2010

Please note: Department, College and LUSU applications MUST be authorised before submission. Please ensure that applications have been submitted for authorisation by Monday the 23rd August at the latest. Please see the Guidance Notes for Applicants for more details. For further information and an application form, please download the details from or call Rachel Davis in the Alumni & Development Office on ext 94897 / email

Parents required for Online Child Protection Focus Group

Isis Forensics, a Lancaster university spinout based in InfoLab21, is seeking parents of children who use the Internet to take part in a set of focus groups over the next few months. The aim is to find out from parents their concerns about how their children use the Internet in order to help develop the next generation of online child protection solutions. For parents it’s a chance to share their views and concerns about this sensitive area with other parents and help shape the online child protection technology of the future.

The first focus group will take place on Tuesday the 20th of July from 12noon to 2pm. It will take place in InfoLab21 and lunch will be provided. A few places are still available - visit to register your interest. Depending on interest, a separate evening event may also be arranged.


For a full list of all items submitted for What's On, please see Events.


All adverts - posted by staff.

Contact Victoria Tyrrell on (01524) 594120 with items for LU text, LU News or for external publicity.
Events information should be sent to Laura Mitchell (01524) 592103.

LU text is usually published on Fridays. On occasion it is necessary to delay publication until the following week. ITEMS FOR INCLUSION SHOULD BE EMAILED TO THE EDITOR BY 12PM THURSDAY BEFORE PUBLICATION. Adverts are limited to University members and we are unable to check incorrect contact numbers or email addresses. All attempts will be made to include adverts sent via email, but no guarantee is made. The editor reserves the right to edit copy. The opinions expressed in this bulletin are not necessarily those of the university management.

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