I wish to dissent from plans to further break up the University of London, a federal institution by design and destiny. The desire of the leadership of King’s College London, among others, to become a separate university should be resisted (“Bill paves way for London colleges to gain university status”, News, 19 April).
King’s, UCL, the London School of Economics and other fine colleges should remain as constituent members of an organic larger body, sharing Senate House Library and other central resources, and indeed lectures.
I fondly remember choosing an option in political philosophy during my third year at King’s in the 1980s, which allowed me to be taught by some of the finest thinkers of the day, including the late G. A. Cohen, then at UCL, as well as the excellent staff of my own college. All that education, collegiality and collectivism would be lost by this selfish push for individual institutional status.
What the University of London really needs is vigorous, visionary leadership capable of rebinding it into the world-leading federation it should be.
Alistair S. Duff
Professor of information policy
School of Arts and Creative Industries
Edinburgh Napier University