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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. To view previous editions see LU Text Archive.

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| 15 July 2011 | Issue 530

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

There will be no editions of LU Text during August. The next issue (after the 29th July issue) will be published on Friday 2nd September 2011. Please ensure you check the Facilities campus works website regularly as there is a lot of work taking place across the campus that might affect you.

NEWS

Three new Distinguished Professors

The University is delighted to announce that Vladimir Falko (Physics), Kevin Jones (LEC) and Sylvia Walby (Sociology) are to become Distinguished Professors, a category reserved for a limited number of star academics who are internationally recognised as world leaders in their field.

Professor Vladimir Falko, Head of Theoretical Physics, recently received a Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award worth £127,000 in recognition of his achievements in nanoscience. He was chosen for his work on exploring the theory of the electronic properties of nanostructures and low-dimensional materials, such as graphene, which has the thickness of only one or two atoms. Ever since the emergence of graphene in 2004, Falko has been a major player in the field: he and his research team have discovered the unique electronic properties of bilayer crystals, predicted unusual transport characteristics of graphene p-n junctions, and laid the foundations for the understanding of the transport and optical properties of this new material.

Professor Kevin Jones, recently appointed as the new Director of the Lancaster Environment Centre (LEC) from August 1st, is one of the most highly cited researchers in Environment and Ecology. He is a well known environmental chemist who has been in the top ten of the ISI Web of Science, the recognised measure of the most influential researchers, since its inception and is currently rated 4th in the world. He is also a Senior Visiting Professor at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Honorary Professor of Jinan University and Visiting Professor at Xiamen University. He was elected a member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters in 2007 and is an advisor to the United Nations Environment Programme; the European Union; the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution; and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Sylvia Walby holds the UNESCO Chair in Gender Research and is Professor of Sociology. She has an OBE for services to equal opportunities and diversity, is an Academician of the Academy of Social Sciences, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. She was the founding President of the European Sociological Association, and has been President of the Research Committee on Economy and Society of the International Sociological Association. She is noted for her theoretical and empirical research on gender regimes, globalisation, gender-based violence, knowledge economy, measuring inequality and complexity theory.

Graduation

Graduation Ceremonies – 19-22 July

Nearly 3,000 students of Lancaster University and its Partner Institutions in the North West will visit the University from 19-22 July to receive their degrees. The degrees will be conferred by the Chancellor, Pro-Chancellor and Deputy Pro-Chancellors in eleven ceremonies, which take place over four days. They will be accompanied by over 7,000 guests who will watch the ceremonies in the Great Hall or in a live web link in the Faraday Lecture Theatres.

Other major hubs of activity will be the LICA Building - hosting robing, photography and other associated services and Lancaster Square - where group photography will take place after each ceremony. The Colleges will also be hosting celebration events for their graduating students. Over 300 staff will be participating, either by joining academic platforms, or assisting with the smooth-running of the ceremonies. To view the full timetable follow link. All the ceremonies can be viewed live via the web

Free bus travel for staff in Graduation Week

Stagecoach in partnership with Lancaster University are providing staff working at the University with 7-days free bus travel in the Unirider area (including ‘Unirider South’ area from Catterall) for Graduation Week (Monday 18th to Friday 22nd July 2011). The offer applies to staff that do not currently have any type of Unirider bus pass. Vouchers for a free 7-day ticket can now be obtained from the LUSU Information Desk, Slaidburn House until Friday 15th July, subject to availability. Vouchers must be redeemed with a bus driver within the stated dates on the voucher. Vouchers will be offered on a first come, first served basis and 130 vouchers are being made available. Staff ID will be required to obtain a voucher such as a Library card or staff uniform. One voucher per person. For any University staff considering the subsidised Staff Unirider bus pass next year this is a good opportunity to try the bus for a week, free of charge. More information on University bus services here.

Flexible Benefits – Car Parking, Bus Passes and Sports Centre

The annual enrolment period for the next Flexible Benefits year (1 October 2011 – 30 September 2012) will run from 8th August to 12th September. Instructions on how to select benefits will be sent to home addresses at the beginning of August. Please ensure your personal address details are correct by logging into employee self-service. If you experience any difficulties please contact Ruth Fielding in HR.

Car Parking *Pro rata charges for part time staff* – Following consultation with staff representatives, pro rata charges will apply for part-time staff from 1 October. Further details are available here. All staff on indefinite or fixed term salaried contracts must apply for their permit through the flexible benefits system, during the annual enrolment period. This will be the only way to select your permit for the 2011-12 academic year. If you are unable to participate in salary sacrifice arrangements please contact Catherine Hadwin in HR.

Bus Passes – Subsidised Stagecoach bus travel will continue to be available. The full cost of a pass (£308) will be reduced as follows for staff: Grades 1 and 2 Free, Grades 3 and above £65.04. To obtain your subsidised pass, you must select this through the Flexible Benefits system during annual enrolment.

Sports Centre - Take advantage of the excellent new sports centre by selecting bronze, silver, gold or platinum membership through Flexible Benefits. Further details are available here.

Lancaster’s commitment to fair access and quality backed by OFFA

The University’s plan to charge £9,000 fees for undergraduate courses from September 2012 has been accepted by the Office for Fair Access (OFFA). This will allow Lancaster to build on its track record of success in attracting bright students from a variety of different backgrounds and to invest further in the student experience. Lancaster students will continue to enjoy the benefits of study at a top ten university among diverse peer groups. Thanks to a £350m investment made in campus facilities and its academic excellence Lancaster has been able to consistently top student experience league tables. Lancaster has made these investments alongside efforts to reach out and attract students from a wide range of backgrounds and has a strong record in delivering successful outreach programmes. Full story

First ever undergraduate student recruitment event in London

Prospective students from the south east have attended the University's first ever undergraduate student recruitment event in London. In feedback, 90% who attended said they are more likely to apply to Lancaster after attending the event, which was held at The Work Foundation. The Lancaster Experience event invited Year 12 students from across London and the Home Counties to meet Lancaster University staff and students for sessions during the day, including personal statement and student finance workshops. Current Lancaster undergraduates also provided a presentation on student life which was particularly well received. Full Story.

People

Andy Clarke has been appointed Divisional Director of Human Resources. Andy has wide experience of leading HR functions in major organisations most notably at BAE Systems and Lloyds Banking Group, most recently as HR Director – Banking Operations for Lloyds. Andy will start at the University on September 1st.

Following the Facilities Review the following changes will apply to the management structure in Security and Portering from the 1st August. Mark Salisbury will take up the post of Security Operations Manager. Mark will report to Mike Sheppard, Deputy Director of Facilities and will be supported by 4 Duty Supervisors, Doug Shaw, Robert Bird, Stan Wilkinson and Wayne Nisbet.

Congratulations to Feargal Cochrane (PPR) and his wife, Rosaleen Duffy (formerly of Politics and International Relations) on the birth of their first child, a son called Oisín, weighing 7lb 14oz on 1 June.

Dr Maggie Mort (Faculty of Health and Medicine) chaired a lively debate at an NHS “Question Time” event on June 30 organised by the Lancashire Local Involvement Network (LINk). More than 160 people, many of them health professionals and patients, attended the event at the University of Cumbria where the panel included Eric Ollerenshaw, MP for Lancaster and Fleetwood, orthopaedic surgeon Bryan Rhodes, community development worker Caroline Collins and GP David Wrigley, campaigner with Keep Our NHS Public. The audience put a series of questions to the panel about the current Government changes to the NHS.

Lancaster in the news

Follow link to see a list of people in the news.

Collaborative research into the effects of aviation on climate during World War Two bombing raids by the Lancaster Environment Centre is featured widely in international media this week, including newsites in Germany, France and Poland. The research also featured on the American online news channel Fox News which attracts a potential viewership of over 20 million.

Notices

Sports Centre tours

Book your tour of the New Sports Centre and see first hand the state of the art facilities, gym equipment, pool with floating floor and the climbing wall and bouldering cave.
The Sports Centre Open Days are every day during Graduation Week. Tours take place on the hour from 9-4pm. Email or call 01524 594000 with your name and preferred tour time and date.

Geographical Information Systems (GIS) Research UK (GISRUK) conference

Lancaster will be hosting the 20th annual Geographical Information Systems Research UK (GISRUK) conference from the 11-13th April 2012. We welcome papers on all aspects of theoretical and applied GIS research, the closing date for submissions is 25th November 2011. All papers will be subject to peer review with accepted papers allocated to oral and poster sessions accordingly.

We are pleased to confirm that the keynote speakers for this year’s conference will be:

For more information and submission details please visit the conference website, or contact members of the local organising committee. The Local Organizing Committee: Duncan Whyatt, Gemma Davies, Ian Gregory, Barry Rowlingson, Mike James, Pragya Agarwal, Alan Blackburn and John Watkins.

WHAT'S ON

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

Geographical Information Systems (GIS) Research UK (GISRUK) conference

11-13th April 2012. We welcome papers on all aspects of theoretical and applied GIS research, the closing date for submissions is 25th November 2011. All papers will be subject to peer review with accepted papers allocated to oral and poster sessions accordingly.

For more information and submission details please visit the conference website, or contact members of the local organising committee.

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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