Cogito Ergo Summary: Your Weekly Science Listings

By M@ Last edited 150 months ago
Cogito Ergo Summary: Your Weekly Science Listings
perkin mauve.jpg

These listings appear every Wednesday. If you want to let us know about any upcoming science or technology events, you can contact us on

Event of the Week

New social benefits from an old Docklands discovery, at Gresham College on Tuesday

150 years ago, an east-end teenager stumbled across something remarkable: a brand new colour. Henry Perkin, ensconced in his flat on Cable Street, was toying with some simple chemicals. By chance, he created a stain of singular qualities, very different from those normally associated with 18-year old boys furiously experimenting in their bedrooms. The young man’s good fortune was to produce the world’s first synthetic dye, a compound of rich purple hue he dubbed mauveine. Realising the possibilities, he got together some friends, in a shed, and soon found ways to scale up production. One year later, young Perkin was rich, famous and, we presume, painting the town mauve on his earnings.

It’s a stirring story of spotty adolescent serendipity, not widely known to the general public. So it’s good to see Gresham College is hosting an anniversary lecture by Dr David Leaback next Tuesday. (Though, for goodness sake, Gresham, sort out your uninspiring, confusing blurbs. Are you trying to scare people away?)


The only other events we could find are a trio over at the Dana. Tonight, we’re reminded of the issues surrounding stem cells, with a focus on the various sources and their pros and cons. The audience will then be given the chance to make ‘policy decisions’ using a system of cards.

On Thursday, it’s local election day. The Dana Centre gets our vote with a highly topical discussion on the science-politics interface.

Can science and politics be compared to oil and water, or is their relationship murkier than that?

The talk will highlight the differences in communicating science policy on both sides of the Atlantic.

Finally, on Tuesday, there’s another outing for that lecture circuit regular, personalised medicine. Join a sizeable panel as they debate, yet again, whether insurance companies should have access to your medical files and whether the NHS will be able to afford bespoke therapies.

When and Where?

DECIDE: The origin of stem cells, tonight, 6.30, Dana Centre, FREE

The Politics of Science, Thursday, 7.00, Dana Centre, FREE

New social benefits from an old Docklands discovery, Tuesday, 6.00, Gresham College, FREE

Personalised Medicine: Cure or quandary?, Tuesday, 7.00, Dana Centre, FREE

Last Updated 03 May 2006