Fender argues for open sharing

May 9, 1997

ACADEMICS feel their departments lose out on cash because institutions do not tell them enough about money matters, a funding council chief has warned.

Brian Fender, chief executive of the Higher Education Funding Council for England, has urged universities and colleges to be more open about the way they distribute grants.

As the HEFCE's own funding allocation methods became easier to follow, departments could see how much money had been allocated to the university because of their work, he said.

Through the RAE they could work out how much money they had earned through research, while similar estimates were possible on the teaching side.

"We are funding a block grant," said Professor Fender. "The university legitimately takes something off for its own costs. But subject groups would like to be able to follow that exercise, from the money leaving us to arriving on their desk. Universities need to explain to departments where the money has gone to and what the overhead costs and charges are."

But Kenneth Edwards, vice chancellor of Leicester University, said: "It's really up to the institution to sort out any problems like this."

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