Me, myself and I

February 23, 2012

One of our leading scholars, Professor F.R. Beavis, of the Department of English and Related Studies for Impact, has announced that in future he will acknowledge the co-authorship of research that he would formerly have published under his name alone.

He explained that his decision had been "influenced" by Professor Stephen Mumford, of the Faculty of Arts at the University of Nottingham, who argued recently that co-authorship should be more prevalent in the arts and that "if a major idea or approach came from another person", then that person should be listed as a co-author.

Professor Beavis confirmed that his new book, How Many Horses in Your Phaeton? Jane Austen and the Social Hierarchy of Carriages, would appear as authored by F.R. Beavis, Mrs Dorothy Beavis, Miss Caroline Beavis and the tall man with red hair who normally sits at the end of the bar in The Fox and Grapes.

Mrs Dorothy Beavis was unavailable for comment because it was "wash day".

So far and no further

Jamie Targett, our Head of Corporate Affairs, has publicly condemned the recent assertion by Amanda Mosek, principal of Boston College, that "there's a lot of snobbery from universities".

He admitted to withdrawing 50 places from the Poppleton College of Further Education but insisted that this decision had been based on the purely educational grounds that now that further education colleges were getting degree places from the government "they could jolly well hand back those they had on licence from us".

There was also a question of reputation. Now that Poppleton University was a universally recognised brand, it could no longer risk "brand dilution" from association with "johnny-come-lately educational establishments that can teach so cheaply only because they lack real senior common rooms and proper professors and multi-coloured robes and a choir to sing on degree day".

"Let's face reality," Targett added. "Why would anyone be content to go no farther than 'further' when the opportunity existed to go 'higher'?"

Honouring the offer

We now understand that Vince Cable, the Business Secretary, has honoured his offer of the post of Director of the Office for Fair Access to Les Ebdon.

Although Mr Cable offered the honour of Offa to Professor Ebdon some time ago, the opposition to his appointment from Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, and Conservative MPs on the Business, Innovation and Skills Committee meant that the honour had been on and off until Mr Cable finally asserted his authority and announced that his original offer of Offa to Professor Ebdon was once again onna.

We hope this clarifies the situation.

Not going anywhere

The announcement that Mr John Gill is the new editor of Times Higher Education means an end to the promotional hopes of our reporter Keith Ponting (30).

In a brief statement, Mr Ponting congratulated Mr Gill but admitted his disappointment at learning that his application for the post had been rejected because he was not considered "mature enough".

Mr Ponting said that this "totally failed" to do justice to the "readily available fact" that he would shortly be celebrating his 31st birthday.

Thought for the Week

(contributed by Jennifer Doubleday, Head of Personal Development)

"Next week's seminar is on 'Eradicating Negative Thought Patterns: The Unrealised Potential of Frontal Lobotomy'. All welcome."

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