SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit

Professorial Lectures

Throughout the year, the University of Sussex is host to an exciting series of public lectures that illustrate the breadth and quality of research being conducted at the University.

Most lectures are recorded and made available here in a number of formats.

Public experiments: the science and art of scientific advice

James Wilsdon

01 October 2014
Speaker: James Wilsdon, Professor of Science and Democracy - School of Business, Management and Economics

Fifty years after the appointment of the UK’s first Chief Scientific Adviser, scientific advice has never been in greater demand; nor has it been more contested. From climate change to cybersecurity, the questions being asked of scientists and other experts continue to multiply, whilst at the same time, their authority and legitimacy is increasingly scrutinised. This lecture will describe how cultures of scientific advice in the UK have changed, questioning whether this current enthusiasm is part of a broader shift towards more ‘experimental’ forms of government.

More information about James Wilsdon

Risks and Rewards: Building symbiotic innovation eco-systems

Professor Mariana Mazzucato

05 March 2014
Speaker: Professor Mariana Mazzucato, Reginald M Philips Professorship in the Economics of Innovation

The State not only 'fixes' different problems in the market (of which there are many), but also actively shapes and creates them. In doing so, it faces extreme risk. This lecture will focus on rethinking the dysfunctional relationship between the State and the Market, considering more concrete mechanisms for reform, building more ‘symbiotic’ eco-systems between the public and private sector, and achieving growth that is not only smart but also inclusive.

More information about Professor Mariana Mazzucato

Is natural gas the fuel of the future or a bridge to nowhere

Professor Jim Watson

06 November 2013
Speaker: Professor Jim Watson, Professor of Energy Policy - Science and Technology Policy Research (SPRU) - School of Business, Management and Economics

Gas supplies 30 per cent of the energy we use in the UK heating our homes, powering industry and generating electricity. But this fuel has a contested future. For enthusiasts, gas provides a low-cost solution to our energy challenges but others are more cautious, pointing to significant economic and environmental risks. The prospect of shale gas has polarised this debate further. This lecture will discuss whether gas can help meet energy policy goals such as climate change mitigation, energy security and affordability.

More information about Professor Jim Watson

Which way is progress? Adventures in science, technology and democracy

Professor Andrew Stirling

07 December 2010
Speaker: Professor Andrew Stirling, Professorial Fellow (SPRU - Science Policy and Research) - School of Business, Management and Economics

More information about Professor Andrew Stirling