Cambridge plans diluted

July 5, 2002

Cambridge University has backed down on proposals to increase the number of signatories needed to force a ballot at Regent House from ten to 50. The change was proposed by the university earlier this year as part of governance reforms, writes Claire Sanders.

But many in the university protested that the proposal would make the university less democratic. Instead, academics will now be balloted on whether the number should be ten, 25 or 50.

But key governance changes remain - principally redefining the role of the vice-chancellor as chief executive, increasing the number of pro vice-chancellors from two to five and bringing external members on to the university council.

In February, the university put out a consultation document, Changing Cambridge , that made radical proposals following a critical independent inquiry on the implementation of a new system. After consultation, a revised document was published last week. Academics will vote on the proposals in the autumn.

The revised document makes clear the "risk" the university faces if it does not reform.

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