Lamont Weekly Report, April 17, 2009

We had the annual budget meeting with the Provost on Tuesday - this is the annual event at which Edie and I try to convince the Provost Alan Brinkley and the CU Chief Financial Officer that we can afford to run the campus for the next fiscal year. This is done with Steve Cohen and the Earth Institute of course (as our budget is tightly integrated with that of the EI).  It was tough this year - we have significant reductions in our endowment income and major growth in costs over

which we have no control. Our financial situation next year is tighter than it has ever been since I have been Director.  Of course we are all hopeful that when the stimulus dollars begin flowing from NSF, that the institution will get some relief because of the increase in indirect cost recovery, but I fear we will not see that until well into 2010. (And rumors aside, I still have no reliable idea of when stimulus funds will reach the program level within NSF - some have said that program managers will hear today - but I really do not know.) Anyway - enough with the negativity...

This Sunday is our third public lecture of the spring series (Nick Christie-Blick and Byrdie Renik talking about Continental Stretching) which will be preceded by a Board Meeting of the Alumni Association and a lunch for the Friends of Lamont-Doherty (FOLD).

Lamont has broken into the pages of the magazine Popular Mechanics (circulation 1.2 million!) - with pieces on Meredith Nettles Greenland Glacier work and Trevor Williams doing a live presentation on their web site from the drill ship JOIDES Resolution, out in the middle of the Pacific. We have had lots of other coverage over the past weeks of course, but I have to believe that via Popular Mechanics we are reaching a new audience.

I am very pleased to let everyone know about another award for one of Lamont's legendary seismologists - Paul Richards. He is to be awarded the Harry Fielding Reid Medal for outstanding contributions in seismology and earthquake engineering by the Seismological Society of America. The award will take place at the SSA meeting in Portland Oregon in April 2010. Congratulations, Paul!

When I was an undergraduate at Imperial College in London in the late sixties, the fact that the band Procol Harum inhabited a flat just around the corner from Prince Consort Road in South Kensington (where IC is located) was a matter of frequent and frenzied discussion. In the 'Useless Facts You Do Not Need to Know, Really' Department:  I heard on NPR this week (and I always believe everything I hear on NPR), that the song most listened to in public (i.e. on juke boxes) in the UK for the last 75 years (yes, seventy five years) was A Whiter Shade of Pale. NPR's credibility was stretched with that one...

Anyway - weather looks good for the weekend, so have a good one,

- Mike