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A selection of news highlights from the media in June and July 2011. The Public Relations office prepares and distributes media releases on behalf of the University and each year responds to more than 600 calls from the media (ranging from expert comment to filming location requests).
Professor Colin Riordan is to be the next Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff University. Professor Riordan, who will take up the post on 1 September 2012 when Vice-Chancellor Dr David Grant retires from office, is currently Vice-Chancellor of the University of Essex. He moved to Essex in 2007 from Newcastle University, where he had been Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Provost of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences since August 2005. Times Higher Education, Wales Online, The Western Mail and South Wales Echo featured this story.
Our annual graduation ceremonies often reveal some interesting student stories and this year was no exception. There was a lot of media interest in the story of 85 year old Harold Jones who collected his degree 66 years after World War II forced him to miss his graduation, including The Independent, BBC Online, BBC Wales Today, ITV Wales Tonight, and the Western Mail.
Television presenter Fiona Phillips was made an Honorary Fellow in recognition of her tireless campaigning to raise awareness of Alzheimer’s disease. During her visit to Cardiff for her graduation ceremony, she also visited the University’s MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics this week to investigate leading Alzheimer’s research. ITV Wales sent their news cameras to follow her on her visit to the Centre: ITV Online.
A Cardiff academic has been recognised for his outstanding contribution to social psychology, joining a list of eminent individuals who are Fellows of the British Academy.
Professor Antony Manstead of the University’s School of Psychology, is one of only 38 academics to be elected a Fellow of the Academy at its Annual General Meeting on 21 July 2011. Election is a mark of distinction with only a very small number of scholars in any field elected. Coverage of this honour was featured in Times Higher Education and the Western Mail.
Cardiff archaeologists teamed up with English Heritage to create a historical chronology for the fist 700 years of settled life in Britain. Professor Alistair Whittle from the School of History, Archaeology and Religion discusses this first ever detailed picture of life in Stone Age Britain in a number of national publications, including The Independent, The Guardian and BBC News Online.
University archaeologists also discovered a pottery vessel dating back to the 13th Century at Cosmeston. The find has helped shed new light on medieval life in the area.
Researchers at the Welsh School of Pharmacy and the National Botanic Garden of Wales have appealed for help in building up a DNA profile of the nation’s honey, in the hope of identifying plants which could fight anti-biotic resistant superbugs. Their appeal was covered on ITV Wales, BBC Wales, BBC Radio Wales, BBC News Online, The Guardian, the Western Mail, and the South Wales Echo.
A Cardiff study which found that combining information from hospitals and police can make communities safer made national headlines in June. Targeted police work prevents violence, but depends on knowledge of when and precisely where violence occurs. So a team led by Professor Jonathan Shepherd, School of Dentistry, set out to investigate whether using information about the precise location and times of injury, derived from injured patients, can prevent more violence than police effort alone. Their results featured on Sky News and ITV Wales News, and in The Independent, The Telegraph, and the Western Mail.
Researchers from the University’s Danau Girang Field Centre in Malaysia have been having a busy summer. They have been working alongside the Sabah Wildlife Department to tackle the rising number of crocodile attacks on humans in Borneo. Striking photographs of the team capturing and tagging a 4m long, man-eating crocodile appeared in the Daily Telegraph, the Borneo Post, New Sabah Times, and the Western Mail. In July, researchers from the Centre began work on new conservation initiatives aimed at protecting two endangered primate species: the Bornean slow loris and the proboscis monkey.
Research by Dr Ben Ward, School of Chemistry, was named by Universities UK as one of the most important research projects currently taking place in the UK. Dr Ward featured in the Western Mail and discussed his work on BBC Radio Wales.
Cardiff academics provided expert comment to a range of news publications throughout June and July. These included:
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