All features (understanding behaviour)

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The tweets of relaxation

In an ESRC CASE studentship, psychologist Eleanor Ratcliffe at the University of Surrey is exploring how listening to natural sounds such as birdsong can improve mood and attention after stress or fatigue.

Charitable giving

Giving away the Christmas spirit

Charitable giving is another victim of the recession, with research from the Centre for Charitable Giving and Philanthropy and other surveys showing that the amount of giving has fallen - although the number of donors are the same.


The challenges of AIDS - past and present

Thirty years after the first reported cases of AIDS, a unique gathering of experts are examining the early response to the epidemic in the lecture series "AIDS @ 30: Three decades of responding to HIV/AIDS".

Man with megaphone

Striking power

Does the widespread strike in the public sector on 30 November herald a new era of industrial action and empowered trade unions? Workers are provoked by proposed cuts in public sector pensions, and the strike enjoys widespread support.

Riots in London

Do wrongs make a riot?

Were the August riots 'simply criminality' or a symptom of a wider malaise? Looking at the key sectors of education, employment and family wellbeing, expert commentators explore whether society actually is 'broken' – and how it can be fixed.

Energy meter

Cutting fuel bills with energy displays

Energy displays and smart meters are useful tools to manage energy use, but no 'magic bullet' against reduced fuel bills, suggests the RCUK-funded study Domestic Energy Feedback.

City traffic

The low-carbon dream

Many of us claim to be concerned about the environment - but to really be sustainable we need to shift our thinking from a blind faith in technology to a deeper understanding of the links between our lifestyles and the environment, argues Professor Tim Jackson.

Tired businesswoman

Tired? Work in groups

The risk of inflexible thinking increases when you're tired - but working in a team and consulting others helps to make the right decision, shows research.

Criminal in balaclava

Street crime: survival or good times?

Academics and the media have traditionally seen street crime as something carried out by career criminals, but researchers at the University of Glamorgan suggest that survival is not a motive. Interviewed offenders instead point to reasons such as "excitement" and "keeping up appearances".

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