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6 September 2013 | Issue 622

To view previous editions see LU Text Archive

Contents: News| People| Lancaster in the news| Campus Investment| Food & Drink| Training & Courses|


A record year for adjustment and clearing

On A-level results day, 300,000 students across the UK received their A-level results. Lancaster University was well prepared to help students through the process of confirmation, adjustment and clearing, recruiting well over 3,000 new undergraduates for 2013 entry. Full story.

Times Higher Education Awards 2013

Lancaster University has been shortlisted in the Outstanding Contribution to Sustainable Development category of the Times Higher Education Awards 2013. The awards dinner and ceremony will take place on 28 November at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London before over a thousand guests including government ministers. Full story.

Student mentors lead by example

Lancaster University's Target Uni mentoring programme has been singled out as an example of best practice in the UK. The programme is geared towards year 12 pupils who are academically gifted but need encouragement to apply to top universities. The Foundation has identified elements of the Lancaster programme, such as the use of 'Senior Mentors’, as being a national example of good practice and plan to include it as part of their National Training Programme. Full story.

Global Conference On Mobility Futures

This week Lancaster's Centre for Mobilities Research (CeMoRe) held the Global Conference On Mobility Futures. This is part of the celebrations of its tenth anniversary. It was opened by Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Andrew Atherton, as well as representatives of the SNCF-funded Mobile Lives Forum based in Paris.

Over the past ten years the work of CeMoRe and others have 'mobilised' the social and human sciences and developed innovative analyses of economic, social, technological, political, policy and design transformations. This Conference on Mobility Futures reflects this work and provides a forum for the presentation of cutting edge research from across the social sciences that reflects back, explores the present and looks towards future mobilities and their dilemmas. There are around 130 delegates from the UK, as well as from Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Turkey, USA and most Scandinavian countries. CeMoRe has also been recently designated as one four Lancaster University Research Centres.

Local contractor scores towering opportunity

Lancaster-based company and Chamber of Commerce member Askam Construction has been awarded a contract by Lancaster University in excess of £3million to refurbish one of its distinctive and original buildings - Bowland Tower. Full story.

Pre-School Centre awarded Ofsted “Outstanding”

Lancaster University Pre-School Centre has again been assessed as ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted.The Pre-School Centre provides high quality early years care and education for over 200 children of students, staff and the local community between the age of three months and five years. Full story.

Flexible Benefits 2013/14

Annual Enrolment for Flexible Benefits will close at 5pm on Friday 13 September. If you want to make a selection for this year, please log in to Flexible Benefits via Employee Self Service. Alternatively, you can contact the Flexible Benefits Helpdesk on (01524) 5-10614, by email: or by visiting the Helpdesk in the Human Resources Building.

Please note that if you selected a parking permit or bus pass last year through the Flexible Benefits system and want to do the same again for this year that you will need to re-access the Flexible Benefits system and make the selection. If you don’t want to save on tax and national insurance whilst paying for your permit monthly, you can instead purchase a permit directly from the Parking Office. Please ensure that your address details are up to date in Employee Self Service.

Sports Centre membership

Sports Centre membership is available through flexible benefits. To view the facilities available and the different membership options available visit the Sports Centre website or call 01524 510600. This year for the first time the Bronze membership includes weekend usage Saturdays 8.30am – 6pm and Sundays from 9.30am – 6pm.


Distinguished Professor Ruth Wodak (Linguistics and English Language) has been invited to give the opening speech at the Brucknerfest 2013 in Germany on 15 September. The President of Austria will also be among the speakers at the international music festival which runs until 6 October.

Jamie Eastman is the new Director of Live at LICA from November following the departure of Matt Fenton. Jamie joins the organisation from his previous role as Curator of Performance at Arnolfini, Centre for Contemporary Arts, in Bristol where he held direct responsibility for the performing arts and moving image programmes. He has enjoyed a distinguished career in arts programming across music, dance film and theatre, including the role of Head of Live Performance at the ICA.

HE Academy National Teaching Fellowship Awards scheme

Each year Lancaster nominates up to three colleagues for the National Teaching Fellowship Scheme (NTFS). Worth £10,000 to each winner, the NTFS aims to raise the profile of learning and teaching, recognises and celebrates individuals who make an outstanding impact on the student learning experience and provides a national focus for institutional teaching and learning excellence schemes. (There is an internal selection process – the means by which institutional nominees are identified.) The deadline for internal submissions is 1 November 2013. For further details and any queries please see here.

Please advise the panel as soon as possible via Susan Armitage in Organisation and Educational Development if you would like to suggest the name of a colleague or are intending to submit an application yourself for the NTFS.

Professor Andrew Binley (LEC), has been elected as a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) for “Outstanding contributions toward the fundamental understanding of hydrological model uncertainty and for pioneering the field of hydrogeophysics”. AGU is the principal Earth and space sciences scientific body, with over 60,000 members worldwide. AGU states that “Nominated fellows must have attained acknowledged eminence in the Earth and space sciences. Primary criteria for evaluation in scientific eminence are major breakthrough/discovery and paradigm shift”. (

Alan Airth

The University regrets to report the death of Alan Airth, a former member of staff in the Department of Economics, and, more recently, in Mathematics and Statistics, who died on Monday 2 September 2013, aged 90.

Alan joined the Economics Department as a Senior Lecturer in 1966 and taught statistics until his retirement from full-time work in 1983, as well as in honorary posts during his years of retirement. He will be remembered fondly by many students, especially those from overseas, for his dedicated teaching and by staff for his meticulous advice and the depth and breadth of his erudition. He was a good musician who played for many years with the Haffner Orchestra and spoke several European languages. Horse riding and walking here and abroad were his hobbies.

A funeral service will be held for Alan on Wednesday 11 September at 1.00pm in St Pauls Church, Scotforth, and all are welcome. A private family ceremony at the Crematorium will follow.

Everyone is invited to refreshments at the Boot and Shoe in Scotforth after the funeral, and to meet Alan’s widow, Dorothy, and family members after their return from the Crematorium.

Lancaster in the news

Associate Director of Security Lancaster Dr Mark Lacy and PhD student Oliver Fitton write in The Conversation about Syria and cybersecurity.

To see other news items featuring colleagues follow the link.


Energy Management in Non-Domestic Buildings

The EPSRC has published a new call for Expressions of Interest on the Energy Programme Energy Management in Non-Domestic Buildings. As the EPSRC expects to receive only 1 application per institution an internal competition will take place. Full call details.

Internal competition: Please send a short proposal (max 2 sides A4) to the Research Support Office by 3pm on Monday 09/09/2013 – Proposals will be ranked and sent to the Pro-VC for Research who will make the final decision on which project to support in consultation with Associate Deans for Research. Applicants will be notified as soon as possible thereafter. Please contact RSO if you have any queries. Please note that RSO have already received notification of one proposal for this call.

Student Wellbeing Services – Disability Service Changes for 2013/14

The Disability Service are making changes to the way they prepare and share information about students’ support needs for the next academic year. Details of these changes are available on the staff webpages of the Disability Service.

The main change is that ‘Statements of Support’ documents are changing to become ‘Inclusive Learning and Support Plans’ which are generated, held and shared with relevant staff using the LUSI student records system. Inclusive Learning and Support Plans will outline the characteristics and issues related to a student's disability/medical condition and the support and reasonable adjustments required to enable them to study effectively. The new system should facilitate the support process for both students and staff. All new or existing students who declare a disability from this point onwards will be offered an Inclusive Learning and Support Plan. Briefing sessions will run at the end of September.

Survey on Research Support Services

The Research and Enterprise Services Division (RES) is seeking feedback and comments on the services provided by the Research Support Office and the Contract Office. We would be grateful if any member of staff who has received support from either of these offices in the last 12 months would complete the survey which should only take 10-15 minutes . The questionnaire will be open until 30 September.

Commuting to Campus during 2013/14

Updated information on car parking policies and prices for 2013/14 and car sharing, bus improvements and other commuting information is now available on the Facilities Commuting to Campus webpages. Staff should select their travel options through the Flexible Benefits system.

Bus improvements for 2013/14

More than 1 in 5 staff now usually commutes to campus by bus. This has more than doubled since the Travel Plan was introduced in 2005. As the University continues to heavily subsidise staff annual bus travel, further improvements are being made to the underpass. Stagecoach will be making some significant service changes to University bus services from 29 September. Full details will be available soon but those considering whether to apply for a subsidised bus pass next year may wish to consider the bus improvements information on the Buses webpage. New timetables will be available on the Stagecoach website shortly.

Campus Investment

Further information about all the following work and other work on campus is available on the Facilities news webpage, or by contacting the Facilities helpdesk, 01524 593333.

Partial campus power shutdown

On Saturday 7 September and Saturday 14 September, there will be a partial campus power shutdown to enable contractors to undertake work on the primary sub-stations. For further information visit the Facilities news page.

Main Drive exit reopening

At 8am on Tuesday 10 September the main drive (Bigforth Drive) will reopen with traffic flow both ways. On Friday 13 September a traffic light system will be in operation whilst road resurfacing takes place for one day only.

EE signal disruption

As part of the Bowland Tower Accommodation refurbishment project, work is continuing on the roof of Bowland Tower. As the EE mobile phone antennas are located on the roof there will be on-going disruption to the EE mobile service over the summer period. Contractors will keep signal loss to a minimum. See website for the antenna shutdown schedule.

Re-opening of underpass

Following the completion of work to the structural concrete underneath Alexandra Square, the underpass will re-open from midnight Friday 20 September. Information about travel and traffic arrangements are available on the Facilities news page.

Food & Drink on Campus

Information on university run food and drink outlets - Food and drink during the summer vacation

Training & Courses

Staff IT Training The following FREE IT taught training sessions run by ISS are available during the summer. All training sessions take place in the Library Training suites and require booking online, unless otherwise stated.

Interested in gaining Microsoft Office Specialist qualifications? Please see our MOS webpage for details. More information is available on the ISS Staff IT Training pages.

Organisation and Educational Development

Please find below forthcoming staff development opportunities that may be of interest. For further opportunies later in the year please visit the OED website or email directly

What's On

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

How can we all wake up to global sustainability issues?

This is title of the next in a series of talks ‘exploring burning questions for global society’ which takes place at Lancaster Environment Centre on Friday, 27 September (4pm to 6pm) in training rooms 1 and 2 at LEC and will feature short presentations by Tom Ormerod, Professor of Cognitive Psychology, Lancaster University, Chris Hart reflecting on his experience as a hardened local activist and Mike Berners-Lee, co-author of The Burning Question. Please confirm attendance with Helen Boulton (before 23 September).