Letter: Jammy of Jamaica

June 8, 2001

Until three years ago, I was an academic in a "new" British university. I left to pursue better pay and conditions in the private sector, but was dismayed at the loss of quality of life. So I came back into academia, only this time to the University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica.

Here, senior lecturers get paid only up to £30,000, but also receive free housing or an extra 30 per cent of salary.

In addition, the university provides a 10 per cent pension contribution on top of the academics' 5 per cent and there is subsidised medical insurance. Academics also receive a £500 book grant and £2,000 a year for attending conferences.

New appointments receive support for research and the teaching load is considerably below that which I experienced in the UK, at eight hours' contact time a week.

There are no heating bills and petrol is 30p a litre.

If even developing nations can afford better pay and conditions for academics than Britain can, what hope is there of stopping the brain drain?

Tony Ward
Senior lecturer in psychology
University of the West Indies

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (27 July 2017)

It is not Luddism to be cautious about destroying an academic publishing industry that has served us well, says Marilyn Deegan

Jeffrey Beall, associate professor and librarian at the University of Colorado Denver

Creator of controversial predatory journals blacklist says some peers are failing to warn of dangers of disreputable publishers

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Kayaker and jet skiiers

Nazima Kadir’s social circle reveals a range of alternative careers for would-be scholars, and often with better rewards than academia

hole in ground

‘Drastic action’ required to fix multibillion-pound shortfall in Universities Superannuation Scheme, expert warns