Staffordshire University names new vice-chancellor

Sheffield Hallam University deputy vice-chancellor Liz Barnes will take over at Staffordshire early next year

December 18, 2015
liz barnes staffordshire female v-c
Source: Staffordshire University
Liz Barnes, the new vice-chancellor of Staffordshire University, is also an advocate of open plan offices for university staff

Liz Barnes is to succeed Michael Gunn as vice-chancellor of Staffordshire University.

Professor Barnes is currently deputy vice-chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University, having previously served as deputy vice-chancellor and pro vice-chancellor at the University of Derby.

She has also spent 23 years at Teesside University, where she was dean of social sciences and law.

Professor Barnes will take over at Staffordshire when Professor Gunn retires in spring 2016 after five years in charge.

David Gage, chair of the university’s board of governors, said that the selection panel was “particularly impressed with Professor Barnes’ calibre, her strong leadership acumen and her broad and extensive experience”.

“We are confident that she will prove to be a strong vice-chancellor and a worthy successor to Professor Michael Gunn,” he added.

Originally from Staffordshire, Barnes started her career as a PE and maths teacher.

She studied at Sheffield University and subsequently taught physiology and set up sport science at Teesside.

Read more: More and more UK universities appointing female leaders

Commenting on her appointment, Professor Barnes said that she was “delighted” to be joining Staffordshire and commended the “important role that Staffordshire University has in developing our future leaders and entrepreneurs”.

She also praised the university’s commitment to “inclusivity, providing opportunities for students from a broad range of social backgrounds”, as well as its “employability agenda” and its efforts to “contribute to society whilst maintaining excellence in research”.

Staffordshire is the latest in a growing list of UK universities to appoint a female leader within the past year.

These include Soas, University of London (Baroness Amos); the University of Sunderland (Shirley Atkinson); the University of Derby (Kathryn Mitchell); the University of Salford (Helen Marshall); the University of Brighton (Debra Humphris); St George’s, University of London (Jenny Higham) and the University of Oxford (Louise Richardson).

It means that when Professor Barnes takes up the post, the number of women leading universities will have increased by about a third year-on-year.

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Related universities

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Featured Jobs

Most Commented

Monster behind man at desk

Despite all that’s been done to improve doctoral study, horror stories keep coming. Here three students relate PhD nightmares while two academics advise on how to ensure a successful supervision

Sir Christopher Snowden, former Universities UK president, attacks ratings in wake of Southampton’s bronze award

opinion illustration

Eliminating cheating services, even if it were possible, would do nothing to address students’ and universities’ lack of interest in learning, says Stuart Macdonald

Female professor

New data show proportion of professors who are women has declined at some institutions

Reflection of man in cracked mirror

To defend the values of reason from political attack we need to be more discriminating about the claims made in its name, says John Hendry