Memorandum from the National Conference
of University Professors (NCUP)
I am writing concerning the above. I do so on
behalf of the National Conference of University Professors (NCUP).
The National Conference of University Professors (http://www.swan.ac.uk/ncup/)
aims to promote beneficial developments in the UK university system.
The NCUP is dedicated to the impartial communication
of information and advice about higher and further education in
general. Our organisation has a membership drawn from all disciplines
and all UK university institutions.
A recent survey of Members' opinions (see Annex)
indicated a great concern about the perceived threat to the UK
science base. In particular the following emerges:
1. Members view very negatively the impact
that HEFC funding has had, using RAE rankings, on the science-base
of university Departments.
Further, it is felt that:
2. It is undesirable to increase the concentration
of scientific research into a few departments.
3. Teaching only science departments are
both undesirable and non-viable.
4. It is very important to maintain a regional
capacity in science teaching and research.
5. It is essential that Government should
intervene to ensure a continued provision for those scientific
subjects of strategic, national or regional importance.
I would urge the Committee to consider seriously
the voice of the NCUP in this matter. Certainly we would want
our views to be "factored in" to policy actions taken
in the light of the deliberations of the Science and Technology
I have appended an Appendix of both quantitative
(questionnaire based) and qualitative (Members' views that encapsulate
the views of many others) evidence to back up the import of points
1 through to 5 above. I am happy to communicate further on this