Can't sit back and get a chair 2

December 24, 2004

Surrey University has long recognised the challenge between the need to maintain the academic integrity of the professoriat and the need to reward academic staff who are both good teachers and administrators but whose research portfolios might not merit promotion to a personal chair.

Here we have established the grade of academic university director to accommodate such staff. If, in time, a research portfolio develops, a university director can apply for a personal chair.

At Surrey, an academic university director has equivalent financial rewards to a professor and an equal "senior staff" status. It works here - but then we are all different.

Alan Behagg
Director of human resources
Surrey University

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Universities in most nations are now obliged to prioritise graduate career prospects, but how it should be approached depends on your view of the meaning of education. Academics need to think that through much more clearly, says Tom Cutterham