University of Bath UCU Rotating Header Image

Another new member for Bath’s £100K + club

The appointment of a Vice President (Implementation) has raised a few eyebrows across the campus. After all, we have survived 50 years without a Vice President of any kind, so why do we need one now ? With THE reporting Vice Chancellor Breakwell as saying that the focus of the new job is on ‘change management’, some took the job title to mean an unwelcome turn towards expensive and ruthless US-style management practices. It may mean that, but the immediate reasons for using the VP title are more mundane.

When the University was created 50 years ago, its Charter stated that

There shall be a Deputy Vice-Chancellor and not more than three Pro-Vice-Chancellors who shall severally or together, subject to the Statutes, act for the Vice-Chancellor during his absence or during a vacancy in the office of Vice-Chancellor.

There were good reasons for writing this down, not least that there is a limit to the number of senior managers a university needs. These reasons have not gone away, but many senior managers, including Bath’s VC, believe not only that they deserve to be paid twice or even three times as much as their predecessors, but that we need to increase the number of highly paid senior managers even when everybody else’s pay and pensions of are being cut. The new appointment brings the number of people in Bath’s £100K club to 60. This is an increase of 100% since 2009 while total staff numbers have increased by about 4%.

The (Implementation) part of the new VP’s job title suggests we can expect more expensive VPs to be appointed. Where, ask the sceptics, is all this leading ? How can we have one (or more) Vice Presidents without a President ? Step forward President Windsor.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *