Friday, May 30, 2008

Help women stay in science

This article and graph from 2000 showing the proportion of women in academic positions is nearly unchanged when updated to figures of today.

An editors note "Help women stay in science" from The Scientist in September 2007, initated a flood of comments with interesting personal views and points on what it is that causes the heavy gender imbalance at top scientific leadership positions.

A quote from the comments:
"I don't know why some of the more seasoned members of the scientific community haven't realized the untapped potential of hiring mothers part time (is no one else aware of thier multitasking capabilities??)"

- The story continues in The Scientist January 2008 issue: "Why aren't there many women in the top spots in academia?"
- Tinyflame blogging on "Women in Science"
- SES Science diversity Meme: Women scientists

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Monday, May 26, 2008

Spinning revisited

It has been more than half a year since I last went to a spinning class at the university sport centre. This weekend, having done no dancing at all (is that really me?), I definitely needed the exercise when I went to spinning Sunday morning. And I tell you - it did me good.
Since last time the sport centre has made a new room only for spinning, with extra good airconditioning, a good sound system, a computer and beamer for possible digital introductions to the lessons, and last but not least a party mirror ball in the ceiling. Apart from the mirror ball, I find these things are excellent improvements to the spinning experience. (The mirror ball just makes it bling-bling, and who needs bling-bling when sweating and panting for your life?)

Illustration courtesy:

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Friday, May 23, 2008

Save a life in Sichuan (from Miaomiao)

Dear all,

As you may know, an earthquake of 8.0 magnitude struck Wenchuan (Sichuan, China) on Monday at 14:28 local time (06:28 GMT). More than 50,000 people died, over a quarter of million injured and over 30,000 are still being buried in the rubble. Furthermore, millions of people have to stay outdoor all day and night as around 3.5 million houses are destroyed (data by local time 19:00, May 13th). The numbers, unfortunately, are still expected to rise.

Now China is open to accept the help form inside and outside of the country. Despite thousands of miles away from the home country, I feel as sad as the Chinese people who are suffering. We pray for them in tears and try our best to help.

The Chinese Red Cross announces 50 Euro will help to save a life:
10 euro for bed quilt
30 euro for food (rice, instant noodle and water etc.)
5 euro for Cooking oil (5 L)
5 euro for administration fee (staff reservation, transportation and delivery )

In total, 50 euro will help one people to go through the first month after the disaster which is the most difficult period.

As the international transfer would generate a cost of 5.5 euro or even higher, we decided to put all the money together into one account and then transfer it back to China.

If you are willing to join us and offer a helping hand, you can transfer the money to any of the follow accounts:

1.Foundation of Chinese Student Support in the Netherlands:
Account number: 49 37 24 648
City: Rotterdam

2.Association of Chinese Students & Scholars in the Netherlands (ACSSNL) :
Account number: 57 93 63 562

Please mark your donation as “donation for SICHUAN” or “donation for China”. You can mark "donation for SICHUAN, orphan" if you prefer the money to be used for the orphans, or "donation for SICHUAN, material" if you want the money to be used for the reconstruction of the area, or "donation for SICHUAN, Red Cross" as the money will be sent to the Chinese red cross foundation directly.

The donations to these two accounts would be combined together and whenever the amount is over 5000Euro (current setting), it would be transferred. Bank of China will transfer this donation without charging service fee, and the donation will be received by red cross China and related organization within 24 hours.

All the donations received, transfer records and receipts from the Chinese Red Cross would be posted on internet (, I am the editor in chief of this website) , and you can check it whenever you want. You may send an email to after your contribution. We will reply you confirming the arrival of your donation.

Alternatively, you can help us through The International Red Cross, the information can be found via:
(choose "I would like my contribution to go to China Earthquake")

Thank you for your kind attention to read this message and your kind donations to help people who are trapped, endangered and being homeless due to the worst earthquake in China in the past three decades.

With kind regards

Miaomiao (I am a member of the foundation board, till today ~60,000 euro has been donated and sent to China)

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Monday, May 19, 2008

HAMLET destruktionen

If you are anywhere near Copenhagen this week or the next, do not miss the current performance of Aktoratet. HAMLET destruktionen is playing on Faar302, with Maja Clementsen Hansen performing the action-packed monologue. Do not miss it!

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Rediscovery of the garden gnomes

This weekend was the first of two weekends of spring cleaning in my house. Daan, Wenke and Niels did a marvelous job in the garden. Not only did they remove half the weight of biomass in our garden to make space and light for the pretty flowers that through all this time still survive in our flower bed, they also discovered a small but happy group of garden gnomes in one corner. When I saw them I immediately asked who had the idea to buy garden gnomes, as it turned out, they had always been there. Only none of us had ever seen them before thanks to the dense jungle of undergrowth thriving there for more than a year.
Welcome back gnomes, do not go disappearing again soon!

Illustration courtesy:

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Saturday, May 10, 2008

Carnaval in Copenhagen

Warm up all week, and today the Copenhagen carnaval starts with a magnificent parade through the centre of Copenhagen!

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