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Almost 200 Manchester Professors Sign Letter of No Confidence

Posted by Richard Ward in ,

Image courtesy of Flickr, Creative Commons

Almost 200 professors at Manchester University have signed a letter expressing no confidence in the institution's management.

The letter was addressed to Edward Astle, the chair of the university's board of governors after management confirmed its plan to axe 171 jobs.

The letter said professors and a "substantial number of other academics" have no confidence in senior management. In particular they feel the compulsory redundancies are being enforced without adequate justification of management's strategy.

The letter continued, saying: "We have all invested significantly in our university and our concerned about the significant damage to internal staff morale and external reputation, which will follow inevitably if the board does not restrain the management."

Of the 171 planned job cuts, 140 are academic positions in areas such as the arts, languages, biology, medicine and business.

Management have described more than 900 roles as being "at risk", and staff are being offered voluntary redundancy before a final decision is made in regards to which jobs will go.

Although substantial job losses are expected, the university has said it will make strategic investments, which includes hiring more than 100 new, early-career academic appointments. The decision to hire, while removing senior posts has led to the University and College Union accusing the university of clearing out experienced academics in favour of cheaper alternatives.

Mr Astle has responded to the letter, suggesting senior leadership have the board's full support and the job cuts were required to ensure the future success of the university.