| 4 February 2011 | Issue 510

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


Lancaster’s fulltime MBA is top 50 in the world and top 10 in the UK

The Financial Times announced their annual MBA survey results on Monday 31st January. Lancaster’s fulltime MBA rank is now 41st in the world. While this is a drop from the previous year, it was not unexpected as there is significant competition from MBA Schools in Asia and across other developing markets meaning that most UK business schools have lost ground in this year’s rankings.

Lancaster’s fulltime MBA is Top 50 in the world and Top 10 in the UK. It is ranked 11th globally for value for money; 19th globally for career progression and ranked 4th in the UK for graduates experiencing rapid salary increases. There are also several criteria on which performance has improved:

LUMS is addressing the strategic implications of the competitive and economic changes with an aggressive international agenda and the Fulltime MBA Programme is working to extend international reach, enhance the student experience and increase alumni engagement. www.ft.com

USS pension consultation

The national consultation exercise which ended on 22 December has resulted in three modifications to the proposals to amend the USS pension scheme. The modifications are:

These modifications have been approved by the USS board who have recommended their adoption to the USS Joint Negotiating Committee. Changes to the USS pension scheme are intended to come into effect on 1 April 2011.

Further details of the modifications can be found on the HR web site.

UCU intention to ballot

The University received two letters on Wednesday 26th January from UCU, giving notice of intention to conduct two ballots of UCU members in relation to industrial action on Job Protection and Pay, and Proposed Changes to USS. The ballots were to take effect from 2nd February 2011.

The University has now received two further letters from UCU dated 2nd February 2011 stating that the notices of intention to ballot will not be going ahead at this time.

HEFCE announces funding for 2011-12

The Higher Education Funding Council for England have announced its funding for universities and colleges in 2011-12. £6,507 million for the 2011-12 academic year has been allocated for the sector, covering teaching, research, capital and related activities. The grants to individual institutions will be decided by the Board at its meeting on 3 March, and the full grant announcement will be published on 17 March. Staff will be informed of what the funding changes will mean for Lancaster as soon as possible after that.

Reductions in funding for the academic year 2010-11 (1 August to 31 July) have also been made because the grant for 2011-12 relates to the financial year (1 April to 31 March) which affects the funding for the final four months of the 2010-11 academic year.

As a result funding for 2010-11 will be reduced by £162 million for teaching and £27.6 million for research. The reduction to teaching grant is 3.5 per cent and the reduction to research is 1.7 per cent compared to previously announced figures.

Further information on changes to 2010-11 grant is in paragraphs 15 and 16. Further information on the Board's decisions about funding for HEIF is available here


The Chancellor, Sir Christian Bonington, presided over the meeting of University Court which was held on Saturday 29th January before requesting that Deputy Pro Chancellor, Professor Stanley Henig take the chair on his behalf. A tribute was paid to Professor Henig who retired as Deputy Pro-Chancellor at the meeting, (see People). Themes of the meeting included the importance of the existing strong relationship between management and students to ensure continuing success, recognition that changes to the financing of the sector will bring challenging times to come and the strength of Lancaster’s position owing to both quality of staff and infrastructure.

Annual Reports were presented by the Pro-Chancellor Bryan Gray, the Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Wellings and the President of the Students’ Union Robbie Pickles. A presentation by Director of Finance Sarah Randall-Paley was also given and Court received the University’s audited accounts for the year ending 31 July 2010. Amongst other items on the agenda, Court received the final report of the Council appointed working party appointed to investigate the impact of tuition fees and considered a motion (defeated) to establish a working group of Court to consider the impact for Lancaster of the new fees level.

Lancaster launches fundraising for food security

The time for action is now if the world is to tackle the growing Food Security crisis, guests were told at a recent dinner to launch fundraising for the Lancaster International Food Effort. The event, held at the Royal Society, showcased Lancaster’s response to the many issues that impact on Food Security, in particular highlighting the contribution of alumni and staff to countering these challenges. It also outlined the University’s plans to seek funding for post graduates from countries most in need of support to safeguard food supplies and distribution.

The Lancaster International Food Effort will form a key project under the umbrella of Lancaster’s forthcoming Jubilee Campaign, which aims to secure philanthropic support for the University’s research in areas of international importance, as well as maintaining the opportunity to study at Lancaster for people from all backgrounds.

Carbon awareness

The Carbon Awareness Day ‘Carbon Savings Ideas’ competition generated over 60 carbon saving suggestions and ideas, from travel and food to energy saving. The winner was Mike Cowie (ISS) whose idea was to set up an automatic scheme to enable a group of University users to commute to the University in a larger taxi. The feasibility of the scheme is being investigated further by the Travel and Environment Co-ordinator. Mike has chosen a bike from GreenLancaster as his prize.

If you missed the Carbon Awareness Day you can still view the information at one of the roadshows taking place on campus over the next few weeks and talk to the University’s Environment and Sustainability Manager about the Carbon Management Plan, Travel Plan and proposed Wind Turbine Project. Refreshments will be provided free of charge at the roadshow.

To view the Carbon Management Plan Executive Summary click here.

To view a leaflet about the success of the Travel Plan click here.

If you are in support of the wind turbine planning application there will also be the chance to write a letter of support to Lancaster City Council at the Carbon Awareness Roadshow or you can do this online by clicking here.

Wind turbine public consultation

The University will be holding a public consultation on Monday 7th February between 6pm and 7.30pm to give you the chance to ask any questions you may have about the wind turbine proposal. The public consultation will be held at Lancaster University in the John Welch Room on the first floor of University House.

More information about the proposed wind turbine is available at www.lancs.ac.uk/windturbines or you can call 01524 593333 for more information.

Young atheists needed for new study

Lancaster University has launched a one year study investigating atheism and the digital generation. Researchers are interested in hearing the views of young people aged between 16 and 25 years old in the UK who hold atheist, humanist and secularist views and/or engage with organisations like the British Humanist Association and National Secular Society. The research, funded by the Jacobs Foundation, based in Zurich, Switzerland, who support work on youth and development, will hopefully shed new light on a growing but little understood group in the UK. Dr Rebecca Catto, Research Associate on the Arts and Humanities Research Council/Economic and Social Research Council funded Religion and Society Programme, is leading the project. Full story

Lancaster hosts first UK-Japan workshop on graphene

The 2010 Nobel Laureate Professor Kostya Novoselov has given the opening lecture at the first bilateral UK-Japan workshop on the new material graphene, hosted by the Department of Physics. More than a hundred researchers attended the event, which was organised by Dr Edward McCann and Professor Vladimir Falko. The workshop opens a series of national meetings to coordinate the UK effort into further research into graphene, which consists of an atomically thin layer of carbon atoms. For more details, see this link.


Professor Stanley Henig has retired as Deputy Pro-Chancellor, a post he has held since 2006. His association with the University began in 1964 when he was appointed as lecturer to the Department of Politics, and also played a part in the establishment of the Chaplaincy Centre.

In the General Election of 1966 he successfully stood as the Labour candidate for Lancaster and served as MP to 1970, when Labour lost the seat. After periods at the University of Warwick and the Civil Service College, he joined the staff of Preston Polytechnic (now the University of Central Lancashire), and was later awarded a personal chair, retiring in 1997 as head of the Department of Politics and European Studies.

He was Labour Leader of Lancaster City Council from 1991 to May 1999. He came onto the University Court in 2000, and won a contested election to the Council in February 2001.

The new Deputy Pro Chancellor is Gill Gardner, a practising solicitor who has been a member of Council for the last three years and who has just been re-appointed for another term.

Professor Rachel Cooper (LICA) with colleagues from Imagination ran a workshop on critical interdependencies in UK infrastructure for InfrastructureUK's Engineering Interdependency Expert Group and Brian Collins, Chief Scientific Advisor BIS/Transport. The results of the workshop will be reported to government in March.

Colleges and Student Life are pleased to announce that Craig Lowe will act as Student Wellbeing Services Manager until such time as the permanent appointment is made.

Student Samuel Holland is to attend the Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles on February 27 after starring in a short film “Wish 143” which has been nominated for an Oscar. The English undergraduate makes his screen debut in the film, which was produced as part of BBC Film Network's Drama Shorts 2009 commission, in conjunction with Lighthouse Arts and Training and BBC Writersroom. The film has already picked up Best Short Film at The British Independent Film Festival 2010 and the Audience Award at the Palm Springs Film Festival 2010. To watch the film follow the link.

Lancaster in the news

Contributions to the media this week include an interview with Professor Andrew Richardson (Engineering) about Nanotechnology which has been published by the European Commission in the journal “EU Research Supplement”, and Egyptian academic Dr Shuruq Naguib (PPR) commenting on the situation in Egypt on Radio 5 Live. Follow link to see a list of people in the news.


Underpass Closure - Saturday 5th February

The underpass will be closed to vehicles and pedestrians this Saturday only from 7am – 6pm to allow the contractors working on the Alexandra Square project to carry out further work safely. The bus stop will be relocated to Bowland Avenue. Diversion signs will be in place. Facilities apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

Building closures for Alexandra Square lift delivery

On Saturday 19th February between 8am and 5pm the installation of the structural steel to the lift pits in Alexandra Square will take place. This will involve closing the underpass road and University House, for the erection of a crane that will tower over University House and manoeuvre the structural steel into place above the lift pit in the underpass and up into Alexandra Square. For your health and safety the following areas will be temporarily closed and diversions in place:

Diversions will be in place for buses. Extra security and a team of staff will be managing the delivery and closures during the day. Facilities apologise for any inconvenience caused. If you need further information please contact the Facilities helpdesk on 93333.

Bowland main refurbishment

The contractors will start the cleaning of the brick work on Monday 7th February, starting with the external west elevation by the entrance to University House and progressing into the quad. To try and reduce the noise an electric generator will be used rather than diesel. Extra sheeting will also be put up to contain the dust. Please bear with us while we work to improve your facilities.

Visitor car parks and new parking machines

The Visitor parking areas on campus have been renamed with letters to help with their identification. Their locations can be viewed here on the updated Parking Zones Map and are as follows:

New pay & display machines are now operational at all of these car parks apart from Car Parks G and L which are yet to open and at Car Park B. Visitors to Car Park B should use the machine nearby on Car Park C at John Creed Avenue. Charges are £2 for 2 hours or £5 for 10 hours and can be made by coin or by debit / credit cards at one of the new machines. Visitors are also permitted to park on the Bigforth Barn car park where a parking machine is also in place (coin only). New signs have also been installed this week adjacent to the parking machines. These signs include a simplified campus map to help visitors orientate themselves and details of the visitor parking charges.

Alexandra square rejuvenation project

The repaving of the square and replacement of the steps is progressing well. In order for the contractors to progress they will be moving the hoarding line from next week so access will only be available around the edge of the square under the canopy rather than across the square.

Laptop encryption

Staff should make all reasonable efforts to ensure that no important or sensitive data is carried on laptops and should access this data remotely when required. If you do have to carry important or sensitive data, ISS are now able to encrypt your laptop using Truecrypt. To arrange this contact the ISS service desk on 10987. See link for guidance on data security issues.

SharePoint 2010 launch

ISS recently rolled out SharePoint 2010. This is an upgrade from SharePoint 2007, and although most users should not see any difference, My Site owners will have seen changes. Details of these changes and the new and improved features are available by following this link to the SharePoint page. Any users experiencing problems after the upgrade should contact the ISS Service Desk in the first instance.

Staff IT training

You can book any of these sessions by filling in the online booking form here.

Applications For 2011 L’Oréal-Unesco Uk And Ireland Fellowships For Women In Science Open

Applications for the L’Oréal-UNESCO UK and Ireland Fellowships For Women In Science open this week. This year, four outstanding female post-doctoral scientists in the UK or Ireland will be granted a fellowship worth £15,000 each. The finalists will be selected by a panel of eminent scientists, chaired by Professor Dame Athene Donald. Entries can be made online at www.womeninscience.co.uk.

Friends programme funding available

Application forms are available from the Alumni and Development Office for funding through the Lancaster University Friends Programme. Departments, colleges, and individuals can apply for funding (most grants will be in the £2,000 - £5,000 category). The next round of disbursement of funds will take place in May 2011.

All applications are to be submitted to the Alumni & Development Office by noon Friday 1st April 2011. Please note: Department/Faculty, College and LUSU applications MUST be authorised before submission. Please ensure that applications have been submitted for authorisation by noon Friday 25th March 2011. Please see the Guidance Notes for Applicants for more details. For further information and an application form, please download the details from the web page or call Rachel Newbury in the Alumni & Development Office on ext 92904 / email


For a full list of all events, please see Events.

Revolution Today: Egypt and the Arab World

There will be a special seminar held today by the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion (PPR) to discuss the important recent events in Egypt. The seminar will be chaired by Professor Chakravarthi Ram-Prasad, speakers include Dr Shuruq Naguib and Dr Amalendu Misra. All are welcome. Friday 4th February, Bowland North Seminar Room 6, 5.30pm-7.00pm. For further details contact: Shuruq Naguib or Amalendu Misra.

Chinese New Year celebrations

LUSU and the CSSA would like to invite all staff to the Chinese Market and New Year show that is being held on Friday the 11th of February to celebrate the Chinese New Year period. From 12-4pm, Edward Roberts Court will host a Chinese Market consisting of authentic Chinese activities including calligraphy, cutting, lantern decoration, dumpling making and face painting as well as Chinese food caterers. In the evening the Chinese Students and Scholars Association will then host their traditional New Year Show consisting of typical Chinese performances including the dragon dance as well as other society and musical performances. The show will be held in the Great Hall from 7.30-10pm with tickets available from the LUSU information desk from 10am on Monday.

Developing a culture of Sustainability

All staff and students of the University are invited to attend a half day symposium on 14th March, which will consider the complexity in adopting a sustainable approach for individuals, organisations and society. Also to be discussed will be how the University should respond to the sustainability research agenda. The symposium will be held from 14.00-17.30 Meeting Room 2, Bailrigg Conference Centre. Please reserve a place please by contacting: Pamela Forster on 01524 592096. For further information follow the link.

MSc Open Afternoon

The Department of Psychology is holding an informal MSc Open Afternoon from 3.30pm on Friday 11th February in D18, Fylde College. Current students and staff are invited to attend to find out more about the courses, and to discuss the applications procedure with members of staff and past students. Further information, if required, can be obtained from postgraduate.psychology@lancaster.ac.uk

Live at LICA events

Theatre: Saturday, 05 February at 20.00 - Bryony Kimmings – Sex Idiot

Concert: Thursday, 10 February 2011 at 19:30. Manchester Camerata Ensemble with Film by Netia Jones


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Contact Victoria Tyrrell on (01524) 594120 with items for LU text, LU News or for external publicity.
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