'Colleagues earn Pounds 500 a day'

April 23, 1999

Cash cows amid bulls and bears

Elizabeth Chell is a professor of management at the University of Newcastle. On top of her salary, she also earns money from private consultancy, advising small firms in the northeast of England. Although she says she does not earn much for her private work, she has colleagues working for large companies who average Pounds 500 a day. "Some earn more," she says.

Universities recognise the need to put limits on how much academics rake in from such consultancies - and how much time they spend on private work. "Every university will have its own guidelines," Chell says. "At Newcastle, we are allowed to keep whatever we earn from up to ten days of consultancy a year. People who do more have to arrange for the fee to be paid directly to the university."

According to Chell, private consultancy can be an aid to research for the business academic. "The company is our laboratory. We need to get out there to understand how companies work," she says.

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