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LU Text will not be published during August. The last edition is on 27 July and the weekly service will resume on 7 September 2012. Please ensure you check the website regularly as there is a lot of work taking place across the campus that might affect you. To view previous editions see LU Text Archive.

See the Press Office news and events pages here

| 20 July 2012 | Issue 576

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


HRH the Duke of York attends inaugural Graduation Dinner

Distinguished guests including HRH the Duke of York and the Chancellor Sir Christian Bonington CBE have attended Lancaster University’s first Graduation Dinner on July 19. Over a hundred people attended the dinner in the Lancaster Leadership Centre which was hosted by the Vice-Chancellor Professor Mark E. Smith. Full story.

Nearly 2,500 students of Lancaster University and its partner institutions have received their degrees this week. Read about some of the new graduates here including two junior doctors, a film actor, a nurse and Emily Phoenix who has survived cancer.

Significant reduction in pollution achieved by creating green walls

Scientists at the Universities of Birmingham and Lancaster (UK) argue that by ‘greening up’ our streets a massive 30% reduction in pollution could be achieved, according to research published this week (18 July 2012) in the journal Environmental Science and Technology. Full story.

The research, by Dr Tom Pugh (LEC) and former Lancaster academic Professor Rob MacKenzie (Birmingham University) with Professor Nick Hewitt and Dr Duncan Whyatt (LEC), about how a reduction in air pollution could be achieved by greening up city streets, was featured on BBC online, Air Quality News website, 18 July, Rocket News, Noodls, sustain' Magazine , Manchester Wired, UK Wired News, London Wired, 18 July.

Lancaster strategic options

Following discussions in May, at Council and Senate, and also at a Strategic Options Workshop, a new discussion forum site has been set up to facilitate consultation and debate around strategic options for the University. The site includes all documents relevant to this discussion, and all staff and students are encouraged to visit the site to make comments and to contribute to the discussion about Lancaster’s future.

LEC research published in Nature Climate Change

Two separate LEC research projects have been published in Nature Climate Change this week. One highlights how the water systems in the humid tropics are on the cusp of rapid change which is likely to put the people living in the region at greater risk of flood and contamination of their sources of drinking water. A team of scientists, including Dr Nick Chappell (LEC), has developed a strategy to provide the observational evidence to improve understanding of how the combined effects of the changing water cycle and land-cover adjustments impact people in developing nations. Full story.

LEC scientists have also proposed a new way of considering society's reactions to global warming by linking societal actions to temperature change. Using this framework to analyse climate change policies aimed at avoiding dangerous climate change, they suggest that society will have to become 50 times more responsive to global temperature change than it has been since 1990. The research by Dr Andy Jarvis, Dr David Leedal and Professor Nick Hewitt is published here Nature Climate Change on 15 July. Full story.

Ageing: Moving Beyond Boundaries

The Centre for Ageing Research (C4AR) is organising an international conference - ‘Ageing: Moving Beyond Boundaries’ – which is being held on campus from 5 - 7 September. It brings together those studying ageing from a wide range of disciplinary perspectives, with themes including: active ageing; mental wellbeing in older people; ageing in residential settings; dementia and brain ageing; and age-related diseases. Several distinguished speakers are giving keynote presentations. Details of the programme and how to register are available via the conference web-site.

Preschool Centre’s moment to shine

The children and staff at the Pre-School Centre were visited by an Olympic Torch bearer this week. The children were given the opportunity of having their photograph taken with Amy Leck who is a sports teacher at Heysham High School. The exciting session ended with their own Torch Relay, details of which will be available on their website soon. Thanks were given to Kim Montgomery and her team at the Sports Centre for making the event possible.


Professor Keith Beven (LEC) has been awarded the 2012 American Geophysical Union Horton Medal for outstanding contributions to hydrological research. The award will be presented at the Union Medal Ceremony in San Francisco in December. This is one of the most prestigious awards for hydrological research, with this being only the second in Europe of the 27 previous awardees since 1976.

After weeks of gruelling training Lancaster University College Administrators and Residence Officers, aka 'Team Suds' are ready to run the 5k Race for Life at Lancaster University this Sunday in support of their friend and colleague Gill Sudlow, who was recently diagnosed with cancer and to raise much needed funds for Cancer Research. They would like to thank the many generous sponsors who have helped them raise an incredible £750 so far and would like to put out a final plea for more support. Sponsor online - it's quick, easy and totally secure.

Professor John Urry (Sociology) was in Girona giving a lecture series on Mobilities and Futures, as well as participating in related debates and media discussions. These occurred during July 2012 when John was the holder of the Ferrater Mora Chair at the University of Girona. Previous occupants of this Chair that has been in operation for around 20 years have included Paul Ricoeur, Ilya Prigogine, Noam Chomsky, Richard Rorty and Joseph Stiglitz.

Professor Cary Cooper (LUMS) has been made an Honorary Fellow of the IOSH, Institution of Occupational Safety and Health.

Dr Plamen Angelov (School of Computing and Communications), who is coordinating the Intelligent Systems Area within Infolab, has been invited to chair three prestigious conferences: International Joint Conference on Neural Networks-2013 in Dallas, USA; FUZZ-IEEE2014 in Beijing, China , which is one of the three components of the World Congress on Computational Intelligence 2014 and CYBCO 2013 in Switzerland, the IEEE international conference on cybernetics. The three conferences are the top conferences in the world for neural networks, fuzzy systems and cybernetics.

Dr Richard Tutton (Cesagen/Sociology) was an invited panellist at the Euroscience Open Forum (ESOF) in Dublin on 15 July. The ESOF is ‘a major platform for debate, for influencing policy and strengthening the links between science and society‘. Dr Tutton spoke in a session called ‘Personal Genomes and the Future of Medicine’ co-organized by the European Molecular Biology Laboratory’s Science in Society Programme and the German Cancer Research Center. He discussed the important contribution that the social sciences make to understanding the uptake and impact of genetic risk information by patients and consumers.

More than 80 delegates including researchers, nightclub owners, along with representatives from alcohol and drug services, charities and the police came to Lancaster to share their ideas on key issues relating to drugs, alcohol and the night-time economy in today’s economic climate, as well as consider the broader benefits and barriers to knowledge exchange between academics and practitioners in the drugs and alcohol field, at the Drugs, Alcohol and the Night-Time Economy Stakeholders’ Knowledge Exchange Conference 2012 on July 12. The event was hosted by Drs Karenza Moore and Fiona Measham (FASS). See for videos and updates.

Beccy Whittle (LEC) and Paul Alcock (InfoLab21) are looking for volunteers to take part in a research project called ‘Current’, which aims to reduce the amount of energy that is consumed by computers on campus. Getting involved is quick and easy and all those who sign up will be entered into a prize draw where five lucky winners will receive a standby saver for their home worth £20.

The researchers are asking staff and PhD students with PCs running Windows to sign up for software that they developed with ISS and with the help and feedback from 20 staff and student volunteers. The software does two things:

To read more about the project, visit here and then sign up here.

Lancaster in the news

Professor Simon Bainbridge (FASS) was interviewed on regional TV about the Wordsworth Walks - a course he is leading on how William Wordsworth’s poetry can help business people think about their priorities and their careers - on BBC NW Tonight and ITV borders news on 6 July. Information about the course was also broadcast on local radio. Lancaster University is in the top ten of universities for employment following graduation according to the Daily Telegraph.

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


Finance Year End Procedures

The Finance Year End Procedures for 2011/12 are now available on the Finance web pages. Please note there are changes this year. Follow link for full details.

Undergraduate Visit Days

Please note the Wednesday 29 August 2012 undergraduate visit day is now fully booked. Preparations are well underway for welcoming approximately 8,500 prospective undergraduate students and their families on to campus. The next available Undergraduate Visit Day is on Saturday 22 September 2012 and students can book a place online here. There is also a campus tour with a department drop-in session on 31 October 2012 so please signpost prospective students towards these events. For more information regarding any of these events please contact Kathryn Lambert in the UK Student Recruitment and Outreach Office on x93724.

Summer of Sport Personal Challenges – Free pedometers

If you are looking for something to do during your lunch hour or after work to improve your fitness and wellbeing, visit the Sport Centre and pick up a Summer of Sport Challenge Booklet. Challenges include swimming, climbing, rowing and walking or running in the campus grounds. There are free pedometers to record your distance and when you have completed the challenges you will be entered into a free prize draw to win a year’s membership. If you are not already a member, from now until 30th September the Sports Centre is offering £1 a day membership. Thinking about getting a membership as part of the Flexi-benefits scheme? Why not try out the facilities on offer before you commit? For more information visit the Sports Centre website

Charity Zumbathon

The Sports Centre is holding a charity Zumbathon on Saturday 19th August, 2pm – 5pm, to raise money for life changing surgery in America for twin sisters who suffer from Spastic Diplegia Cerebral Palsy. If you would like to take part in helping them to walk again, please contact Carolyn Sutcliffe on 07929883102 or email for a sponsor form.

The Base

On Saturday 21 July, the contractor will be working on D floor (in the corridor and comms room) and in the Cashiers office and foyer area between the hours of 8.00am - 4.00pm. The water will be isolated to University House to allow the contractor to carry out work to pipework in the A floor foyer area. If you are intending to be in the building on Saturday your nearest toilets will be in the Learning Zone. We apologise for the disruption this may cause.

Removal of temporary bus stop

The netball courts' temporary bus stop on South West Drive has been removed and the area has returned to a staff parking zone. The nearest bus stops are the underpass, InfoLab21 and Lonsdale College.

Race for Life road closures on Sunday 22 July - 8.00am - 2.00pm

For further details please see here.
Buses - The Underpass bus stop will be open as normal during the road closures. All buses will stop here. No buses will serve the Sports Centre and North Drive bus stops during the road closures. Facilities apologise for any inconvenience this may cause, for more information contact the Facilities helpdesk, ext 93333.

Traffic disruption in Lancaster and rerouted X1 bus service

A section of gas pipeline between the junctions of Damside Street and Water Street is being replaced. Work will start on 22 July and last approximately six weeks. The X1 bus service will not be able to serve Lune Road and St. George’s Quay during these works so it will return to the one-way system via Meeting House Lane from the railway station. Further information is available here. The telephone number for enquiries is 0845 6044527.

Revised arrangements for coach drop-off, pick-up and coach parking

Since the reopening of the underpass, the policy for coach arrangements on campus has been updated. Please view the policy here and communicate the information to coach companies for events and visits.

Visitor Rooms

Visitor rooms can now be booked online If you have external guests who require B&B accommodation, please direct them to the online booking site. Any guests being subsidised by the University should still go through Benjamin Milby directly. or ext 92899.

Training and courses

Staff IT Training

Upcoming free IT training sessions taking place over the Summer vacation; run by ISS in the Library Training suites. If you would like to attend any IT Training sessions please book online.

For up to date information please see ISS Staff IT Training.

Organisation and Educational Development

Recruiting the Best – 24/07/12 – 24/07/2012 and 25/07/2012 – 09.15am-4.30pm This is an improved module on recruitment and is designed for recruiting managers, admin staff supporting recruitment activities, and any staff sitting on recruitment panels. This two day course looks closely at: the legal framework for recruitment and the recruitment process, including key stages and timelines. It also looks at job descriptions and person specifications and advertising and shortlisting, as well as assessing candidates, planning for interviews and interview preparation; questioning techniques; decision making; and following the interview. To book your place please email OED

PDR – Deep Dive for Reviewers – 26/07/2012 – 10.00am - 4.00pm. This course is for PDR reviewers to allow them to practise the skills required for effective PDR implementation and discussions The course will cover the context of the PDR as well as the characteristics of an effective PDR, an overview of the PDR scheme and documentation, as well as how the opportunity presented by PDR can be maximised. You will also improve your practical skills such as creating and setting meaningful objectives and providing high quality feedback and development plans. To book your place please email OED.

CAP- Certificate in Academic Practice The Certificate in Academic Practice (CAP) is an in-service programme designed to support and accredit the academic development of a range of staff who teach and support student learning at Lancaster. More detailed information in response to questions frequently asked about the CAP programme is available here. If you are interested in applying for a place on CAP for 2012-13 please complete this application form. Please email an electronic copy to and the copy signed by both yourself and your HoD via internal post to:

SLP – Supporting Learning Programme This course is for associate teachers, in particular Postgraduates and researchers who teach. More detailed information can be found here. If you are interested in applying for a place or have any queries please email the OED team.


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

Beyond the Castle seeks volunteers - Volunteer information and development session

Wednesday 25 July, 1-4pm at The Storey, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster. Repeated 6.30 – 8.30pm. Beyond the castle, a project involving LICA, wants to make a quality public space from the area around Lancaster's historic castle, down the hill, over the meadows to the quayside, and the first step invites everyone to imagine and design the possibilities. Everyone can participate in Beyond the Castle and right now we're looking for volunteers who can work with us to help facilitate and deliver a series of events over the summer and autumn. The events will encourage people of all ages to share their half-formed thoughts, considered plans and big ideas for the space Beyond Lancaster's historic castle. This is an ideal opportunity for anyone wishing to learn valuable skills in creative facilitation.

Read more and register for the afternoon or evening training session here.


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.

Design by Lancaster University's InfoLab21, an ICT Centre of Excellence