I don't know about you, but I'm seeing more and more science related stories in the news. Now, whether this is because I'm actively looking for these stories or we are actually seeing a rise in interest in how science plays a part in our everyday lives is yet to be seen; perhaps a topic for my next editorial.

David Willietts, Minister of state for universities and science is causing quite a stir in many sectors. Willetts is a seasoned shadow minister (shadow secretary of state for innovation, universities and skills, shadow secretary of state for work and pensions and shadow secretary for trade and industry) and true advocate for the importance of science and science research, we all hope to see some redressing of priorities when it comes to the area of university funding and science budgets. But with the government deficit at record levels this might be too much to hope for, at least in the immediate future.

The Queen's Birthday Honours list has seen the OBE being awarded to Brian Cox, for his contribution to science. Known for his rock star looks, and uncanny knack of being able to explain some quite tricky scientific theories, in a catchy and off beat way, Brian Cox brings a fresh approach to science and is a great role model for many young scientists around the world, he was quoted as saying “I really am chuffed”, at being awarded the OBE.

The former keyboard player for the group D:Ream, is a particle physicist and professor at The University of Manchester and is becoming increasingly known and praised for his acclaimed BBC TV series “Wonders of the Solar System”.

Amongst others named in the honours list is Professor John Beddington, the UK government's chief scientific adviser. Professor Beddington said: “I am delighted by this honour, and particularly delighted because it recognises the importance of science and engineering in the UK.”

Professor Colin Humphreys, received a knighthood, and Professors Athene Donald and Julia Goodfellow both become Dames.

In an age where environmental and financial issues are hitting the headlines, key figures are beginning to wake up to the role science plays and how it extends far beyond the laboratory. Professor Beddington is probably best known for his comments on the world facing a “Perfect Storm” by 2030; with food, water and energy being in such demand, it will cause unrest around the world.

Science debate, theory and policy is now crossing the divide; government, financial and other, migration of our scientists must follow to avoid the storm and ensure science remains top of the agenda.

Read full text on ScienceDirect

DOI: 10.1016/S1369-7021(10)70110-3