Martin Stanton's prescription for universities to become "happy places" contrasts with Tim Reuter's diagnosis of stress there (Soapbox and Letters, THES , November 30). Stanton advocates buying in employee counselling and support programmes. Reuter sees institutional bullying as a primary cause of systemic stress.
Research has demonstrated for years that academics are stressed by workloads and lack of support, and that stress-management strategies are inadequate solutions.
Only political and economic will might make the university a slightly happier place.
Reader in counselling
Sheffield Hallam University