Anti-hooligan rebel

January 3, 2003

It is a bit rich to describe me as a "vociferous anti-moderniser" ("Cambridge rebels hold up rejig", THES , December 13).

The outgoing administration ran up an eight-figure deficit. It tried to balance the books by grabbing patents and copyrights, which would have destroyed our ability to recruit world-class staff. It tried to give the vice-chancellor the power to stuff the council with appointees so that elected members would no longer hold the majority. It tried to sideline the treasurer, who protested against their spendthrift ways. That is not modernisation, it is hooliganism.

Of the six people just elected to the new council, four of us opposed the policy on patents and copyrights, while the two candidates who supported the old council's policies did not get enough suffrage.

Aspects of Cambridge that need modernising range from our financial controls to student recruitment from the state sector and overseas. However, our democratic process works well.

Ross Anderson
University of Cambridge

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