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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. To view previous editions see LU Text Archive.

| 19 March 2010 | Issue 472      Due to the Easter break there will be no edition of LU Text on Friday 2nd and Friday 9th April 2010.

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

NEWS

Akta Patel

The University flag is at half mast to mark the funeral of Lancaster student Akta Patel which takes place today. Akta, a second year student studying for a BA Honours in French Studies and Philosophy, died last week following a road accident. The funeral at the City of London crematorium is being attended by students and officers from Pendle College where she was a member.

Funding

The Higher Education Funding Council for England announced the funding grants for individual universities and colleges for 2010-11 on 18 March. Lancaster University’s allocation is virtually the same as the previous year at just under £47m. Lancaster has been planning for worse outcomes but there will be inflationary pressure which will have to be managed.

DCE and the School of Lifelong Learning and Widening Participation

University Senate on 24th February and Council on 19th March approved the following proposals about the Department of Continuing Education (DCE) and the School of Lifelong Learning and Widening Participation (SLLWP):

  • That the SLLWP should be closed from the end of July 2010.
  • That DCE should cease to exist as an independent academic department and its core activities transferred to the Division of Marketing and External Linkages within Central Services, from 31 July 2010.
Senate also acknowledged the valuable work of staff in the school. These decisions are based on the recent changes and reduction to the portfolio of activities in DCE, especially the phasing out of the Open Studies Programme, brought about by strategic and financial considerations. What remains in DCE is a set of widening participation activities which do not equate to a full department of continuing education. The SLLWP was originally made up of the Centre for Training and Development (CETAD), which moved to the School of Health and Medicine in August 2009, and DCE.

The University is committed to widening participation through activities like its annual £2m bursary and scholarship scheme and its teaching partnerships with local and regional colleges. Many other activities also take place to encourage young people into Higher Education. The core widening participation activities of DCE will also carry on, especially outreach work in schools etc which will complement work already carried out in Marketing and External Linkages.

Mephedrone study documents rise of ‘legal high’

A study into the ‘legal high’ Mephedrone by Drs Fiona Measham and Karenza Moore (Criminology) was published this week in the journal Drugs and Alcohol Today. Initial findings from their study show that the appearance and appeal of this group of so-called ‘legal highs’ can be partly explained by the supply reduction and the consequent slump in availability and purity of ecstasy and cocaine in 2009. To view full story

Royal Society Award for "Unsung Hero" of Science

A senior technician at Lancaster University has received a Hauksbee Award from the Royal Society in recognition of his valuable role in supporting scientific research. The award was presented to Ian Miller by Prince Edward, the Duke of Kent, at the Society’s London headquarters, where he received an engraved bronze medal, scroll and £500.

Ian Miller is one of the world’s leading low temperature technicians, working in the Microkelvin Group in the Department of Physics at Lancaster University with Professor George Pickett FRS. Ian has a world-wide reputation for microkelvin technology. He has been unstinting in assisting other low temperature groups around the world by providing Lancaster experience and technology which can now be found productively operating across Europe, North America and the Middle East. To view full story

Engineers launch CO2 report

A report which argues there is little hope of meeting CO2 reduction targets without the biggest peacetime programme of change ever seen in the UK, has been launched in London this week. Lancaster University Engineering Professor Roger Kemp was one of the authors of the report by the working group from the Royal Academy of Engineering which set out to investigate how the UK could achieve its target of cutting CO2 emissions of 80 per cent by 2050. The report ‘Generating the Future: UK energy systems fit for 2050’ launched at the Science Media Centre this week, found that a fundamental restructuring of the whole of the UK’s energy system will be unavoidable in order to achieve the required cuts in greenhouse gas emissions. To view full story

Finance team shortlisted in THE awards

The Division of Finance has been shortlisted in the THE’s Leadership and Management Awards 2010, in the ‘Outstanding Finance Team’ category. The submission included details of Lancaster’s delivery against its financial strategy, improvements in financial reporting and the successful negotiation of a complex £80m refinancing deal in 2009 which resulted in better terms and in greater flexibility for the University.

The awards celebrate the outstanding achievements of UK Universities’ administration. Lancaster is shortlisted with Bedfordshire, Bournemouth, Edge Hill, Oxford and Queen Mary and the results will be revealed at an event in London in June.

Wind turbine planning application support

Lancaster University is planning to significantly reduce its carbon footprint with the installation of two wind turbines. The University would be the first in England to install two 2.1MW wind turbines, which would produce approximately one third of the University's power requirements, equivalent to the residential power needs of all students on campus. The University has completed its community consultations and the planning application was submitted to Lancaster City Council on Friday 15th January 2010. The formal planning process has begun and a decision on the application will be announced at the end of April.

If you would like to help support the University’s planning application please submit your comments to the City Council by following the link to the planning application. More information about the Wind Turbine Project is available on the website www.lancaster.ac.uk/windturbines.

Lancaster signs new teaching partnership with Kazakhstan-British Technical University

This week Lancaster and Kazakhstan-British Technical University agreed to a new teaching partnership which will see Lancaster’s Communication Systems experts deliver an MSc in mobile technology in Kazakhstan for the first time. KBTU’s Vice Rector for Academic Affairs, Professor Zoya Tuiebakhova travelled to Lancaster to sign an international collaboration agreement with Lancaster’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Wellings on Wednesday 17th March. To view full story

Upgrades of campus lecture theatres

Between 20th March 2010 – 18th April 2010, ISS and Facilities are working together to upgrade Audio Visual (AV) equipment in 9 campus lecture spaces. This upgrade is part of a programme to update all campus Lecture Theatres to a consistent standard of equipment specification and usability. The spaces which are to be upgraded over the Easter period are as follows; these spaces will not be available for booking during this time.

  • LUMS Lecture Theatres 4, 9,10,11 & 12
  • Elizabeth Livingstone
  • Marcus Merriman
  • IENS Biology

If you have any general questions about the new AV systems, please contact Chris Dixon or Naomi Stewart in ISS. All AV equipment in Seminar Rooms, Lecture Theatres & teaching spaces are now supported by ISS. If you wish to report a fault or other 'user issue' with AV equipment please contact the ISS Service Desk on x10987 or iss-service-desk@lancaster.ac.uk.

Death notice

We regret to report the death of PhD student Tracy Dryden (Division of Health Research) who died on Friday March 12. Tracy had been connected with the university for six years, initially graduating with an MA in Health Research before securing a University studentship. At the time of her death she was very close to completing her doctoral thesis on mental health care practices. She will be greatly missed by friends and colleagues. The following tribute to Tracy has been written by her supervisors Dr Dawn Goodwin and Dr Maggie Mort:

"As a mental health nurse, Tracy was deeply concerned that the value of nursing practice – and patient care – was being undermined by policies that constrained colleagues to work in a rigid manner. She believed that in working with people with mental health problems, therapy needed to be flexible, used sensitively, perhaps used in conjunction with other approaches. In this way an individualised approach to care could evolve. But such user centred approaches lack an ‘evidence-base’, and this threatens to devalue mental health nurses’ expertise. Tracy’s doctoral thesis explored in painstaking detail this insecurity which threatens to destabilise mental health nursing expertise and the risks for service users which restrictive and exclusive use of ‘evidence-based’ resources can incur. In doing so she found a way to trace, make visible and give value to mental health nurses’ skills. She was looking forward eagerly to presenting her findings to practitioners and policymakers in the near future, an aspiration which her supervisors and fellow students are determined to see fulfilled. Tracy was an enthusiastic, determined and passionately committed student. She was a caring and sensitive professional, and as a person, she was great fun to be with. She will be dearly missed by her fellow doctoral students and staff in both Health Research and Sociology".

Lancaster in the news

Lancaster in the news - The Press Office monitors all media coverage and this is a selection of stories from the past week, including Professor Roger Kemp in national press and Dr Fiona Measham interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC Radio 2 and also quoted in the New Scientist.

People

LUSU elections for the full-time Executive Officer team for 2010/11 have seen Robbie Pickles voted LUSU President. The former Cartmel JCR President won in an uncontested election, receiving 1455 votes to 306 for Re-open Nominations. The other uncontested candidate was Marc Handley who is the new Vice President Sports. Lizzie Houghton was elected VP Media and Communications/Scan editor with twice as many votes as her nearest rival, while Matt Windsor is the new VP Finance, Events, Democracy and Societies. Due to an error, re-elections were held for the posts of VP Equality, Welfare and Diversity and VP Academic Affairs which saw Pete Macmillan and Robin Hughes elected respectively.

Professor Allyson Fiddler (DELC) has been appointed as a member of the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s (AHRC) Peer Review College. Professor Fiddler will be an academic reviewer for 4 1/2 years from 1 June 2010 to 31 December 2014, and will review proposals and final reports to AHRC’s various funding schemes and programmes.

Professor Paul Farley (English & Creative Writing) has had a book short-listed for the inaugural Ted Hughes Award for New Work in Poetry. Paul’s book "Field Recordings: BBC Poems 1998-2008" gathers together ten years of writing for radio. The Ted Hughes Award, founded by Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, with the assistance of Buckingham Palace and the Poetry Society, seeks to recognise excellence in poetry, highlighting outstanding contributions made by poets to our cultural life. Further details can be found at www.poetrysociety.org.uk.

A Lancaster University Engineering student has been celebrated at Number 10 Downing Street as part of World Book Day. Esti Mardiani-Euers was one of the winners of a TUC writing competition that earned a special tribute from the Prime Minister's wife, Sarah Brown, at a reception at Downing Street. Esti’s story was one of the winning contributions to the book ”Life's Too Short”, which includes stories from builders, bakers, care workers and the driver of a bus of unruly schoolchildren. Esti set her story out as a letter and tells of her experiences finding work in England after arriving here from her native Indonesia. PhD student Esti is carrying out research on Hydro Power under the supervision of Martin Widden and George Aggidis in the Lancaster University Renewable Energy Group. To view full story

Paul Rodaway has been appointed Interim Director of the Department for Continuing Education (DCE), effective from 15th March 2010. Paul assumes this responsibility in addition to his role as Director of the Centre for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching (CELT) and will oversee the next phase in the management of DCE through to its planned closure. There will be a 2 week handover with the previous interim director, Paul Graves, who returns to full-time responsibility as Director of Planning at the end of March.

Professor Murray Saunders, Centre for the Study of Education and Training, Department of Educational Research has just completed a three country series of keynote addresses on issues associated with the evaluation of the use of EU funds for economic development and social cohesion. He spoke at the Eastern European regional symposium, Bucharest, the European Conference on Evaluation of Cohesion Policy, Warsaw and the Ministry Of Finance Portugal.

This month sees the retirement of Linda Cook, Staff Development Assistant in the Professional and Leadership Development Team. Linda is one of the original group of pioneer staff who started with the University in 1964, in the old Department of Higher Education. She left in 1972 to start a family, and returned in 1988. On 31st March, Linda’s last day, the Professional and Leadership Development Team will be hosting a farewell event for her, in Ash House, from 4.00 onwards. If you wish to attend, please contact Dan Leach on 94501, d.leach@lancaster.ac.uk.

Notices

Facilities - Projects Update

An update on projects being carried out across campus during 2010/2011 is now available on the Facilities Projects website.

Easter opening times for College Bars and Cafes Follow link

Film presentation

Charity fundraiser Ian Mercer is inviting everyone to a presentation on last year’s activities. Ian - who is a Physics technician - climbed the three highest peaks in the UK with a team of six and cycled between each peak in just over 52 hours. He and 30 cyclists also did the 175 mile Coast to Coast from Tynemouth to Whitehaven in two days. Over £30,000 has so far been raised for the charity Coronary Coasters which supports coronary care, and Ian reached the semi-finals of the Pride of Britain awards. The presentation featuring video and music will be at 1230pm in Lab 2 (A46) of the Postgraduate Statistics Centre on Wednesday, 24th March.

Vacancies for Assistant Dean

The County College seeks applicants for the post of Assistant Dean. There are two posts available for the forthcoming academic year. For a full job/person specification please email Bette Nichols, County College Administrator at b.nichols@lancaster.ac.uk The closing date for applications is Friday 14th May. Interviews will be held in week 6 of the Summer Term.

Bowland College administration and porters are moving

Bowland College offices and porters’ lodge are moving from their current location on the Spine to the north-west wing of Bowland Main, fronting on to Bowland Avenue. This is the first phase of college refurbishment which is due to be completed by September 2011. The move is planned to take place on 25th and 26th March. The new admin wing will house the porters’ lodge, the main college office, and offices for the residence officer, principal and the JCR. There will also be a new off-campus students’ room with lockers and study facilities, and a kitchen for general use. The current telephone numbers will continue to be used.

Student Employee of the Year Award 2010

If you have a student staff member working for you who has worked above and beyond their role whilst studying here at Lancaster you can nominate them for this annual award. There are institutional, regional and national categories. Nominations are made on-line at www.nases.org.uk. There are more categories for entry this year. If you have any questions take a look at the FAQ’s. The deadline for nominations is Friday 26th March. Julie McLoughlin, JobShop Co-ordinator, LUSU. ext. 93765.

ISS Services Moving To New Building

The following ISS Services will be moved to the ISS Building on Saturday 20th March 2010:
  • VPN (secure remote access) - the service is expected to be unavailable between 9am and 5pm.
  • IP Telephony - the following features will be unavailable for up to 8 hours between the hours of 9am to 5pm:
    • Voicemail
    • CCMuser (Call Manager User Administration Service)
    • Pinlock/Unlock
    The ability to make and receive calls will not be affected.
  • Syllabus Plus (Central Room Bookings) - the service will be unavailable for up to 24 hours.
  • Agresso - the service will be unavailable for up to 24 hours.
  • LUSI - the service will be unavailable for up to 24 hours.

The following ISS Services will be moved to the ISS Building on Saturday 27th March 2010:

  • JANET Connectivity - campus users will be unaffected, but Chancellor's Wharf and Cable Street Residence users will be without all network connectivity between 9am until 5pm;
  • Sharepoint - access to all public-facing Sharepoint websites, RSS services, Central Faculty, Department and personal SharePoint sites - will be unavailable for up to 24 hours.
No other services will be affected. The move is timed during a period of relatively low usage. More Information: http://www.lancs.ac.uk/iss/projects/decant/.

Cashiers Closure

Cashiers will be closed on Tuesday 24th March between 09.00 and 11.00 for staff training.

Easter break electricity shutdowns

In order to carry out some essential electrical safety maintenance the Facilities Infrastructure team need to shutdown the electricity to parts on the campus over the Easter break. Click here for more information and maps of the affects areas.

Online survey of staff experiences of Performance and Development Review (PDR)

An online survey is launched today on how Performance and Development Review (PDR) has been implemented since it began in January 2009. The purpose of the survey is to collect information on how PDR has been operating, from the point of view of individual members of staff. The information will help HR to assess its impact so far, and will also help to improve the scheme where necessary. Individuals are not asked to give their name or department, just the broad areas where they work, their staff group and information that will help equal opportunities monitoring. In this way anonymity will be preserved and individuals should feel able to give honest and considered answers about their experiences. The survey is open from 12th March until 31st March. To access it, click on the link below and follow the instructions. www.survey.bris.ac.uk/lancaster/pdr1.

WHAT'S ON

For a full list of all items submitted for What's On, please see Events.

Lancaster China Management Centre Seminar

The Advanced Institute of Management Research has invited Professor Marjorie A. Lyles, OneAmerica Chair in Business Administration, Indiana University, Indianapolis, to give the next Lancaster China Management Centre Seminar. The subject is ‘The Performance of Chinese Outward FDI: Effects of past experience, learning capabilities and overall motivation’. The seminar is on Friday 26 March 2010 in Management School Lecture Theatre 3 (near the main reception) at 4.00 pm. All are very welcome.

ADVERTS

All adverts - posted by staff.

Contact Victoria Tyrrell on (01524) 594120 with items for LU text, LU News or for external publicity.
Events information should be sent to Laura Mitchell (01524) 592103.

LU text is usually published on Fridays. On occasion it is necessary to delay publication until the following week. ITEMS FOR INCLUSION SHOULD BE EMAILED TO THE EDITOR BY 12PM THURSDAY BEFORE PUBLICATION. Adverts are limited to University members and we are unable to check incorrect contact numbers or email addresses. All attempts will be made to include adverts sent via email, but no guarantee is made. The editor reserves the right to edit copy. The opinions expressed in this bulletin are not necessarily those of the university management.

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