• Corporatising the Poly

    On Thursday a small ceremony symbolically marked the latest phase in the creation of the corporate-educational complex that calls itself Plymouth University.

    The Vice Chancellor (Wendy 'I-love-shopping' P) finally got around to visiting our building. Not to meet the staff (heaven forfend, she avoids staff like we've got leprosy) but to 'open' the branch of Santander bank which is squatting in the corner between Link and Smeaton buildings.

    Of course the branch has in fact been open for some weeks - but it takes the VC a while to catch up with things - possibly her chauffeur had time off and she couldn't leave her fortress in Portland Villas (yes, she is known to demand her chauffeur driven car to get from her suite to the Roland Levinsky building - a distance of all of 300 yards, which is obviously too far to waddle and carries too much risk of running into real people or staff)

  • Strike against the Strike

    Why I have not been on strike today and have resigned from the union (Unison)

    Three sets of related reasons:

    Firstly locally union membership is very low (well under 50%) despite trying to encourage colleagues to join and I don't see why I should loose a day's pay to benefit the majority who will not or can not take action for themselves.

    In addition in our particular circumstances isolated days of strike action have no effect on the employer. Even if membership and support for the strike was a solid 100% there is no work that would not get done because of staff being on strike. Things would just happen a day later. No student or research programme (our customers) would be seriously, or even mildly, inconvenienced by a one day strike, or even a series of isolated one day strikes. In these circumstances a strike is totally ineffective gesture politics.

  • Who Got All The Pies?

    So who got a pay rise of 11% in 2010-11 while her staff got a 0.4% rise (or a 3% cut in real terms)?

    Whose peers doing the same job got a 0.8% increase while she enjoyed her 11% inflation busting top-up to her gross salary?

    Who gets paid 32% more than the average salary of her peers?

    Answers in today's THES

    Who actually does the work which increases our university's efficiency and rankings?


    Who gets all the pies?