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Protests by Staff, Advisers Rattle Australian Synchrotron

Science  01 Jan 2010:
Vol. 327, Issue 5961, pp. 20-21
DOI: 10.1126/science.327.5961.20

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Summary

Leaders have said the Australian Synchrotron (AS) will push the boundaries of synchrotron science, allowing clinicians to image a single cancer cell in a woman's breast or plaques in the artery wall of a beating heart. Now the entire facility is in turmoil. Director Robert Lamb has been fired; a majority of the international scientific advisory committee (SAC) has resigned; and staff are demanding that the board chair, attorney Catherine Walter, be removed. Lamb and board members have refused to discuss details. But many observers say that a gaping rift developed between the board of directors on one hand and AS staff and SAC on the other over the slow pace of developing long-term plans.