I think that the University of Edinburgh’s plan to have campus staff report their whereabouts to managers when they leave their “normal place of work” for a morning or afternoon is a very positive scheme (“University of Edinburgh to monitor staff location”, News, 18 April).
To show my wholehearted participation when it is rolled out in my own institution, I will phone my line manager every night that I am working late on research (start and end times), every morning when I am up very early to set up complex class practicals or experiments, and, of course, every weekend and holiday when I’m working instead of spending time with my family. If I don’t get my line manager, I’ll call their line manager. And as soon as I get to 40 hours in any given week, I’ll stop working.
More seriously, no one I know in academia does the work that they are paid for. A tiny number do less. The vast majority do far more. Attempts to regulate working hours on tasks such as research that are not time defined are not just pointless, they are counterproductive.
Allo V Psycho