Salford's new chief performs radical surgery on committees

February 21, 2008

An overly complex committee structure is to be cut back as Salford University launches a period of restructuring.

It will cut its 90 committees to eight, and a new charter of statutes will more clearly define the roles of governance and management.

Helping to oversee the changes is Gill Nicholls, recently appointed from the University of Durham as Salford's new pro vice-chancellor for teaching and learning.

"We're trying to make things clear and make it easier for staff to engage. Salford has many, many committees, and I know from experience that a proliferation of committees doesn't actually get any work done," she said. "Committees become sub-committees, and sub-committees have working groups, and working groups become sub-sub-sub-committees; no decision is ever made. As a consequence, strategically you don't move forward.

"The (new) structure will ensure people know what they're accountable for, and the line of management will be clearer," she said.

The greater distinction between governance and management would, she said, ensure transparency over strategic decisions and clarify managers' responsibilities.

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