We need collaboration not concentration 2

January 22, 2009

Am I the only one who squirmed with embarrassment at the plea for mercy by Michael Arthur as he feared sharing the post-RAE quality-related funding pot with "less" research-intensive universities?

He patronisingly suggests that pockets of excellence, in what he obviously perceives as a graveyard of research mediocrity, will never gain significant critical mass to compete globally. But universities with small groups of slick, intelligent minds achieve their critical mass by working with equally talented partners in cumbersome megaliths.

In the age of e-communication, it is not where you work but how you work together. That is why I decided to move from the University of Leeds but still share grants with enlightened colleagues at Arthur's powerhouse.

Phil Ashworth, Professor of physical geography, University of Brighton.

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