Inside track...

October 20, 2006

Our occasional column keeps you abreast of developments in the jobs market, from tip-offs and career pointers to who's on the move in your field

Global ambitions

ob hunters should keep an eye on the University of Central Lancashire, where a £10 million investment in nine areas of research excellence is fuelling a recruitment drive.

Uclan told The Times Higher that it plans to fill at least 45 new academic posts, including 20 chairs, as part of a push to strengthen its academic base and boost its research standing.

From next month, it will be seeking academics with strong records to lead international-level research in areas it plans to expand. These include a new Institute for Advanced Digital Manufacturing Technology, which is to receive £1.7 million. An interdisciplinary Centre for Creative Digital Industries will get £1.7 million. There is also a £1 million Centre for Disaster and Emergency Planning.

The Business School also gains £2 million to develop its global profile by recruiting senior academics in international human resource management, corporate social responsibility, finance/accounting and cross-cultural management.

Patrick McGhee, Uclan's deputy vice-chancellor, said: "A lot of these areas are key for the economic development in the region, as well as being important areas of research. It is not all about the research assessment exercise."

Dramatic emphasis

Leeds University has added another feather to its cap in the run-up to the RAE.

Christopher Baugh, chair of the RAE sub-panel for drama, dance and performing arts, has taken up one of three new chairs in the School of Performance and Cultural Industries, which has benefited from a £4 million investment in new buildings.

Professor Baugh, who joins from Kent University, said :

"Although there has been drama and theatre at Leeds for years, there is a strong and heady feeling of starting from scratch. That is exciting - I want to be part of it."

Also taking chairs are Justin O'Connor, who leaves his post as director of the Manchester Institute for Popular Culture at Manchester Metropolitan University, and Jonathan Pitches, formerly principal lecturer in contemporary arts and research leader for the Drama, Dance and Performance Centre at MMU.

Greenwind fall

Bournemouth University is celebrating a recruitment windfall that has landed a team of researchers in its lap to help found a Centre for Conservation Ecology.

New readers Richard Stilman, Jim Smith and Rodolphe Gozlan and senior lecturer Kathy Hodder have come to Bournemouth from the Natural Environmental Research Council's Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Dorset, which is being moved to Oxford next year.

The team was well known to the university, which has worked with the centre on a joint masters, among other things.

Brian Astin, head of Bournemouth's School of Conservation Studies, said:

"It is rare to fill a cluster of posts in the same area in one go."

On-site safety

Leicester University managers can rest assured that their institution's £100 million building programme is in safe hands.

Its new director of estates, Paul Goffin, has had more than enough first-hand experience of project managing property programmes, having just built his own house on schedule and to budget in just six months. Mr Goffin said: "The same basic principles apply. You make sure you employ people you can work with and you can trust and you take care about the quality of the materials.

"AND NEVER JUST ACCEPT THE FIRST QUOTE YOU ARE GIVEN."

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