CERN bids farewell to Austria? May 8, 2009Posted by apetrov in Near Physics, Particle Physics, Physics, Science.
Reuters (along with other news outlets) broke the news that Austria has decided to quit CERN. While it is not going to happen until 2011, it is a rather interesting decision. The official reason that has been cited is that Austria does not have enough money for other international projects (would be nice to know what projects they cite). Also, the claim is that Austria does not get enough out of CERN — after all CERN is big, right?
Austria pulls about 2% of CERN funding — so if other countries follow the suit, funding of CERN operations might become an issue.
I think it’s one of those decisions “better small, but mine” — CERN was created to do big science that only several countries can do together. But maybe Austria just wants to do big science cheap — after all, scientific contacts between Austrian universities and CERN are not going to cease.