The 11 greatest-ever minds of the Midlands have been revealed in a competition which aims to highlight the region’s scientific achievements.
Charles Darwin, Matthew Boulton and John Cadbury are just three innovators now in the running to be crowned the region’s number one brain. The winners will be announced at the start of the British Science Festival, which takes place from September 14-19 in Birmingham.
Pam Waddell, director of Birmingham Science City, commented: “The West Midlands has long been at the forefront of scientific discoveries and advancements and we wanted to recognise some of the great minds behind these ahead of the British Science Festival.”
Running alongside the competition to find the greatest mind of the past is the search for a current champion with the shortlist of 10 present pioneers including Thinktank curator Dr Kenny Webster and leading nano-scientist Richard Palmer.
The British Science Festival is expected to attract 50,000 visitors and around 350 exhibitors and scientists. Many of the events will take place on Aston University campus and at various venues across Birmingham.
GREAT MINDS SHORTLIST
* Matthew Boulton, a successful manufacturing business owner
* Charles Darwin, the naturalist famous for his work ‘On the Origin of the Species’
* James Watt, the inventor of the condensing and rotary steam engines
* John Cadbury, proprietor of the small chocolate business which became Cadbury plc
* Abraham Darby, instrumental in the Industrial Revolution for his development of producing pig iron in a blast furnace fuelled by coke rather than charcoal
* John Henry Poynting, developer and eponym of the Poynting vector, which describes the direction and magnitude of electromagnetic energy flow
* Maurice Wilkins, a Nobel Prize-winning molecular biologist, instrumental in the discovery of the DNA structure
* Norman Haworth, a Nobel Prizewinning professor best known for his groundbreaking work on absorbic acid (vitamin C)
* Alec Issigonis, designer of the Mini
* Herbert Austin, automobile designer and founder of the Austin Motor Company
* Thomas Newcomen, creator of the first practical steam engine for pumping water
To vote, go to www.birminghamsciencecity.co.uk