Cooper quits Umist over merger

September 26, 2003

Cary Cooper, media pundit and one of the most high-profile academics at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology, is leaving after 29 years, citing the institute's merger with Manchester University as the reason.

Professor Cooper, former pro vice-chancellor of Umist, professor of organisational psychology at the Manchester School of Management and expert on workplace stress, said: "Everything's a bit chaotic. The university could manage change a bit better."

Umist's management school lost its 5* rating in the last research assessment exercise. Professor Cooper announced this week he would move to the 6* Management School at Lancaster University on November 1.

Having written three books on mergers and acquisitions, Professor Cooper said he was surprised not to be asked to advise on the merger. He said the planned restructuring of the university into four giant faculties was wrong.

The management school used to be part of the independent Manchester Federal School of Business and Management, which included Manchester Business School as a partner. It will now become a department in the faculty of arts and humanities - "a big mistake", Professor Cooper warned.

He was invited to join LUMS by Lancaster vice-chancellor Paul Wellings.

Lancaster has three 6*-rated departments and has the only 6* business school apart from the London Business School.

As Professor Cooper planned to retire in about five years, he said his time would be better spent helping Lancaster to publicise its success rather than waiting for the merged Manchester University to settle down.

"Let a new generation of people lead this new management school," he said.

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