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LU Text

LU Text is published by the Press Office on Fridays during term time and aims to keep you regularly informed of the University's news and developments. Editor, Vicky Tyrrell

| 5 December 2008 | Issue 414

Contents: news; people; new people; death notice; notices; people in the news; what's on; ads


New Digital Economy Innovation Centre announced at Lancaster

Lancaster University has won funding for a new centre that will generate the scientists needed for Britain's future it was announced today by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.

Lancaster is set to receive around £5m to fund a new Digital Economy Innovation Centre to educate a new generation of PhD students. The funding will enable around 50 PhD students over 5 years to become the innovators of the future - trained to work at the cutting edge of the Digital Economy.

Professor Gordon Blair is Director of the Lancaster University Digital Economy Innovation Centre, which will bring together core strengths in Computing, Management and Design to change the way we think about doctoral education and to work with industry - including small and medium sized enterprises in the region. To view the full story

New LICA Development

A £10 million project to create a ‘hub’ for the Lancaster Institute for Contemporary Arts (LICA) is due to start onsite in July 2009.

LICA combines four academic groups; Art, Design, Music and Theatre Studies as well as three public arts facilities; the Peter Scott Gallery, the Nuffield Theatre and the International Concert Series. It also hosts the research group Imagination@Lancaster.

A new building is being developed for the north of the campus which will act as the public face for the LICA groups. As with all the University’s new buildings, the development will aim to achieve a Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) excellent rating. To view the full story

£500k to evaluate policy on Scottish HE

A half a million pound contract has been awarded to CSET (Centre for the Study of Education and Training) in the Department of Educational Research to evaluate the Scottish Funding Council’s flagship policy on Scottish Higher Education.

This is the latest in a portfolio of UK Higher Education policy research which has so far provided £1.3m of funding to the team from CSET which is drawn from across the Department. The team coordinated by Professor Murray Saunders combines world-class expertise in educational, programme and policy evaluation in HE. The four year investigation of the Scottish Funding Council’s Teaching and Learning Enhancement Strategy for Higher Education will include intensive site visits to all institutions in the sector, strategic interviewing and five separate surveys.

Award for the Tourism Centre

The Tourism Centre has won an award in the 2008 Lancashire Excellence in Tourism Skills Awards (LETS) organised by Lancashire and Blackpool Tourist Board and supported by the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA). The Tourism Centre, based in the Geography Division at the Lancaster Environment Centre, supports economic growth within the North West visitor economy and the creative and cultural economy through a range of projects. Team members include Alan Heywood and Kirstine Whiteley. To view the full story

Nationwide Expansion For Graduate Start-Up

Two graduate entrepreneurs are to roll their technology business out across the UK after being inspired by Create, Lancaster University’s business creation centre. Matthew Summers and Duncan McCaffery have founded Insiris Ltd which offers advanced technology such as GPS mobile tracking of personnel and their vehicles. The computing graduates from InfoLab21 now have large investors interested and have a target of £100,000 turnover in the first year, with plans to recruit their own staff. They were both encouraged to become self-employed with help from Create. To view the full story

Degree Ceremonies Wednesday 10 December 2008 - Parking

Nearly 1,000 students will be graduating with Higher Degrees and Diplomas on Wednesday 10 December, accompanied by almost 2,500 guests. As a result, many extra vehicles are expected on campus so there will be much parking pressure on this day. Staff are encouraged to make an extra special effort to car share, use public transport, walk or cycle to the campus if at all possible. For more information on this visit the travel pages of the Estate Management website. If you are driving to work on 10 December please ensure you park ON campus rather than on any roads surrounding the campus, as this is something the University is trying to avoid.

There will be no car parking charges in operation on 10 December but permit holders should continue to park in their appropriate permit zone. A temporary events sign will be in place on the A6 to direct graduation traffic onto the campus via Hazelrigg Lane and Alexandra Park, with parking marshals directing visitors into available car parking spaces. All vehicles are to be accommodated within marked car parking bays only. Two minibus shuttle services will be in operation throughout the day between Bowland Avenue and Alexandra Park and staff can make free use of these services, if required.

Faculty of Science and Technology Christmas Conference

All are invited to attend the SciTech Christmas Conference which will take place on Tuesday 16 December in the Management School Building. The invited speaker for the 2008 conference is Peter Cotgreave, Director of Public Affairs for The Royal Society. Peter's talk, Why should scientists bother getting involved in public affairs? , will discuss the influence that scientists can have, collectively or individually, on policy-making. Peter will be speaking at 2pm in lecture theatre 1, Management School Building. The day will also include talks from all departments and the Grad School poster competition, with posters from across the faculty on display. More details of talks and times are on the faculty website

Touching War: December Schedule

The Touching War activities directed by Professor Christine Sylvester (Politics/IR) with IAS and LU Film Society sponsorship, continue with the subtheme for December ‘War Touching Justice’. Events are open to all. For the schedule of events running through April 2009, see the Touching War website. For further information on all the events, contact c.sylvester@lancaster.ac.uk


Research which began at Lancaster University, has been highlighted in Nature (December 4). In a feature titled ‘Five crop researchers who could change the world’, former Lancaster University researcher Zhang Jianhua is one of the five scientists to be profiled in the story. Professor Bill Davies, Lancaster Environment Centre, is quoted in the article describing how Zhang's work is important to sustain food production in one of the most water scarce regions of the world.

Atletico Estates FC - The newly formed Estates football team, Atletico Estates FC played their first match on Friday 28 November against the Sports Centre. Despite losing 4-1 it was a good team effort and all who played are looking forward to the next match with eager anticipation. This is to be against Physics on December 10th at 1.00pm on the Astroturf pitches at the front of the University. If there are any teams out there that think they are up to the challenge please email j.r.lee@lancaster.ac.uk or n.tonge@lancaster.ac.uk to arrange a match. For the full match report and photographs of the team in action visit www.lancs.ac.uk/depts/estates/latest_news/index.htm

New People

New people in Engineering: Professor Colin Boxall has been appointed to The Lloyd’s Register Educational Trust (LRET) Chair in Nuclear Engineering and Decommissioning at Lancaster University. Professor Boxall, who specialises in physical chemistry, will support the future needs of decommissioning concentrating on the risks associated with contamination and high hazard legacies found at a wide range of nuclear licensed sites across the UK – some of which constitute the biggest sites of diverse risk management in the world. To view the full story

Dr Xiandong Ma has taken up the post of Lecturer in the Engineering Department and Dr Graeme Burt, has been appointed Lecturer in Accelerator Science and Technology.

Welcome to the following people who have joined Estates: Peter McMullan (Senior Project Manager); Anna Cockman ( Project Manager ); Christine Faichney (Technical Administrator); Louisa Malkin ( Communications Officer ); Ian Sturzaker (Landscape Manager ) and Barry Bosworth ( FM Supervisor).

Death Notice

We regret to report that Anne Abraitis, a former employee, who worked in the Management School and DCE between 2004 and 2006 died suddenly last week. For details of Anne’s funeral which will take place on Monday 8th December, please contact Fiona Frank


Professorial Review 2008/09

The details of this year's round of Professorial Review are now on the HR website Please note that the deadline for case submissions to the Faculty Dean (copy to HoD) is 15 December 2008. Head of Department reports should be submitted to the Faculty Dean by 30 January 2009.

Harmonisation of the Annual Leave Year

With effect from 1 October 2009, the annual leave year for all staff will run from 1 October until 30 September. Transitional arrangements have been established for staff whose annual leave was previously calculated from January to December. These transitional arrangements can be accessed at www.lancs.ac.uk/depts/hr/total-reward/files/al.html. The establishment of a standard leave year for all staff forms part of the University's attempts to minimise differences between staff groups. The change does not affect individual annual leave entitlements.

Weather Advice

The University’s Estate Management team has been busy clearing ice and snow and gritting the roads and paths this week to make it as safe as possible. Please take care moving around the campus in the severe weather conditions whether travelling by car, bicycle, car, bus or on foot. For more information on travelling to and from the University click here. www.lancs.ac.uk/depts/estates/travel/index.htm

Workplace travel survey by Lancaster City Council - There's still time to fill it in!

Please help them by completing this survey (by following the link below). The information supplied is kept confidential and no personal data will be shared. www.celebratingcycling.org/images/downloads/workplacetravelsurvey2008.htm. The survey will close on December 12th all questionnaires received by this date will be entered into a prize draw. If you have any questions please call 01524 582392 or email us at celebratingcycling@lancaster.gov.uk.

Thank you for cycling to Lancaster University

The University has teamed up with The Plough Country Pub and Dining Room at Galgate to offer cyclists a free £10 gift certificate for The Plough.*

The £10 vouchers will be given out at key cycle entrance points to the campus on every weekday until Friday 19th December. To qualify you must be cycling past on the correct day(s) between the hours of 08:30 and 09:30 or 16:30 and 18:00, either entering or leaving the campus by bicycle. Around 200 vouchers are available (limited to 1 per cyclist). The voucher is intended as a ‘thank you’ for cycling to and from Lancaster University. *The voucher entitles the bearer to £10 off any food purchases when dining at The Plough Inn. Valid Monday – Friday from 5pm when 2 or more dine. Minimum of 2 courses per person. www.the-plough.co.uk/

If you would like any more information about cycling at Lancaster University and the cycle to work scheme click here www.lancs.ac.uk/depts/estates/travel/cycling.htm

Surplus furniture collection

Do you or your department have unwanted or surplus furniture such as chairs, desks, tables or shelves? Furniture Matters will be collecting surplus furniture from any department across campus on 15th December. The unwanted furniture will be refurbished for reuse and sale or recycled. In order to coordinate the collection please could you forward an inventory of the furniture you would like to be removed to Jonathan Mills (Environment & Sustainability Manager) at jon.mills@lancaster.ac.uk by 11th December. Please could you clearly state the following.

  • Name of Department
  • Contact person phone/email
  • Location of furniture (Block/Room No.)
  • Inventory of furniture (Number and type of items)
  • Condition of furniture

If your department has a requirement for specific furniture items, please forward the details using the format above (but labelling the request ‘REQUEST FOR SURPLUS FURNITURE’. We will do our best to match up offers and requests and be in touch if we have got a match. If you have any queries please contact Jonathan Mills or on 92789

University Carol Service

The University Carol Service will be held on Sunday 7th December at 6.00pm in the Chaplaincy Centre, followed by traditional refreshments. All welcome.

Take advantage of the East Lancs bus

This is a bus service dedicated for Lancaster University staff and students who wish to commute from Blackburn, Burnley or Nelson to the University during term time. Please pass this information on to any students who might benefit from the service. Timetables and ticket prices can be found online: www.lancs.ac.uk/travel/eastlancsbus.htm

Harassment Network

The Harassment Network provides confidential support for any student or staff member who feels they are being harassed or bullied. Contact the network by e-mail at HarassNet@lancaster.ac.uk or see www.lancs.ac.uk/users/equalopp/leaflet.htm#members for a list of network members who can be contacted by phone.


CERTIFICATE IN ACADEMIC PRACTICE (CAP) and ASSOCIATE TEACHER PROGRAMME (ATP), both starting Tuesday 6th January 2009 - a small number of places remain, applications should be sent as a matter of urgency. Application forms and further details are on the CELT website: CAP and ATP

Enquiries can be addressed to Helen Griffiths, Teaching Development Administrator at: professionalprogrammes@lancaster.ac.uk / ext 94704 / C62 Furness.


People in the news - Media coverage for Lancaster University.


Arts , Lectures & Seminars , Short Courses - University events this week.


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