Readers wishing to emulate Tim O'Shea's rise from the Open University - via a short stint as master of Birkbeck College, London - to principal of the University of Edinburgh might like to note the following.
Professor O'Shea is disproportionately cited in this column. Since January 2001, he has made four appearances. In fact, the only person to be referred to more frequently is the higher education minister herself, Margaret Hodge.
Meanwhile, The Diary notes that Professor O'Shea isn't really called Tim - his real name is Michael - and Tim was a moniker he appropriated in childhood.