Who gets paid most

February 9, 1996

Vice chancellors and medics may dominate the top end of the pay tables but the highest paid academic in Britain is a faculty member at London Business School, who pulled in between Pounds 150,000 and Pounds 160,000.

A THES survey of top salaries, based on information in 182 annual reports from higher education institutions, shows that at least 180 academics, including 45 heads of institution, were paid more than Pounds 100,000 in 1994/95. It was not possible to obtain information on top earners, other than vice chancellors, in Wales.

Fifty-three people, including vice chancellors, were on more than Pounds 110,000 per year. Highest paid of the heads of institutions were three London medical school deans, led by Cyril Chantler of the United Medical and Dental School with Pounds 139,000. But these figures also include NHS distinction payments (the main reason why medics top pay tables) and the salaries attached to university chairs.

The highest conventional salary for a head of institution went to Derek Roberts of University College London with Pounds 129,162 while Leslie Wagner of Leeds Metropolitan University was both the best paid vice chancellor outside London and the highest paid from a new university with Pounds 125,000. The lowest paid vice chancellor or principal was Eric Sunderland of Bangor on Pounds 60,759. Heads of new universities are generally better rewarded than their old university counterparts. In cities with both an old and a new university, Birmingham excepted, the new university paid better.

The main concentration of big salaries outside the medical schools is at London Business School, where 51 staff earn more than Pounds 50,000 and seven are on more than Pounds 100,000. Principal George Bain, said: "Six years ago we decided to opt out of national pay scales because we wanted to internationalise the school by attracting top-quality non-UK faculty. Then 20 per cent of faculty was non-UK, today 45 per cent is. We also wanted faculty to direct their main efforts at the school rather than outside consultancy, by limiting outside work to one day a week. That has worked well."

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