Technological Universities Bill 2015: Report Stage

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on December 15th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“… Mary Mitchell O’Connor (Dún Laoghaire, Fine Gael): This is the first of a number of technical amendments relating to investigator powers. The amendment specifically provides for the inclusion in the Long Title of the Bill of a reference providing for the investigation into the performance of functions regarding institutes of technology, including the Dublin Institute of Technology. This provision is comprehended in the function and governance of technological universities …” (more)

[Dáil debates, 14 December]

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Government ‘drops’ plans for powers to investigate universities

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on December 14th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The Government has dropped controversial plans to amend legislation before Christmas to allow for investigators to be appointed to examine wrongdoing by universities, according to well-placed sources. Minister for Education Richard Bruton announced plans earlier this year to allow for Government-appointed inspectors to investigate issues of concern in legislation due be passed before Christmas …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 14 December]

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‘Landmark decision’ by Labour Court on fixed-term contacts for researchers

Posted in Legal issues on December 12th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The Labour Court this week ordered the re-employment of a researcher made redundant by Maynooth University in April 2016. The ruling resulted from a case taken by the Irish Federation of University Teachers (IFUT) under Fixed-TermWorkers legislation …” (more)

[Irish Federation of University Teachers, 12 December]

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Galway TD clashes with Education Minister in Dáil over NUIG Irish language requirement

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on December 8th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“A Galway TD has challenged the Education Minister in the Dáil over legislation to ensure all future presidents of NUI Galway are fluent in Irish. It’s after management at the university recently decided to change recruitment criteria …” (more)

[Galway Bay FM, 7 December]

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NUIG urged to resolve issue of four women seeking promotion

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on December 7th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The chair of NUI Galway women’s staff network has called on the outgoing university president to resolve the situation of four academics taking legal action over lack of promotion. Dr Rachel Hilliard said NUIG president Dr Jim Browne ‘still has time’ to address the issue before he leaves his post at the end of this year …” (more)

[Lorna Siggins, Irish Times, 7 December]

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Ulster University must learn lessons from industrial tribunal findings – Archibald

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on December 7th, 2017 by steve

“Sinn Féin MLA Caoimhe Archibald has said Ulster University must learn lessons from the findings of the industrial tribunal taken by the University and College Union (UCU) on redundancies. The Party’s Further and Higher Education Spokesperson said: ‘The findings of the tribunal taken by UCU regarding redundancies in April 2016 are very concerning …'” (more)

[Sinn Féin, 7 December]

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‘A legal approach to tackling contract cheating?’

Posted in Legal issues on December 6th, 2017 by steve

Abstract: The phenomenon of contract cheating presents, potentially, a serious threat to the quality and standards of Higher Education around the world. There have been suggestions, cited below, to tackle the problem using legal means, but we find that current laws are not fit for this purpose. In this article we present a proposal for a specific new law to target contract cheating, which could be enacted in most jurisdictions. We test our proposed new law against a number of issues that would need to be considered before any legal approach could be successful; would changing the legal status of contract cheating make it less likely to happen? Could this be achieved in a specific way? If so, who should actually be prosecuted and what offence are they committing? Would it actually address the causes of contract cheating? We suggest some answers to these questions, but then also identify a number of unintended potential consequences. We therefore additionally consider whether a legal approach is possible or even desirable. We conclude that a legal approach to contract cheating is possible, and, on balance, appropriate. Using UK law as an example, we offer a specific suggestion to lawmakers, around the world, for how this might be achieved, and conclude that the most successful approach would be to focus largely on a law targeting the providers of contract cheating, in particular commercial services.

Michael J Draper and Philip M Newton, A legal approach to tackling contract cheating?, International Journal for Educational Integrity (December 2017).

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Ulster University ‘must pay over £1m to former staff’

Posted in Legal issues on December 6th, 2017 by steve

“Ulster University (UU) has been told to pay out an estimated total of at least £1m to 143 former members of its staff. An industrial tribunal has ruled that each ex-employee should receive the equivalent of 90 days’ salary. It found UU was guilty of a ‘serious failure to consult’ with their union over redundancies in April 2016 …” (more)

[BBC News, 6 December]

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Academics dispute UCD’s claim to share of their firm

Posted in Legal issues on December 5th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“A dispute over whether University College Dublin (UCD) is entitled to a 15% shareholding in a company involved in developing commercial processes for global pharmaceutical giants has come before the Commercial Court …” (more)

[Tim Healy, Independent, 5 December]

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UCD sues for 15% stake in pharma process firm founded by faculty

Posted in Legal issues on December 4th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“A dispute over whether University College Dublin is entitled to a 15% shareholding in a fast-growing company involved in developing commercial processes for global pharmaceutical giants has come before the Commercial Court …” (more)

[Mary Carolan, Irish Times, 4 December]

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UCD sues pharma startup for slice of €100m biotech pie

Posted in Legal issues on December 4th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“University College Dublin is suing a rapidly-growing pharmaceutical research startup – valued at up to €100m – which was co-founded by one of its own chemical and bioprocess engineering professors. Applied Process Company Limited (APC), formerly Applied Process Consulting Limited, is set to become a major player in the global pharma and biotech market …” (more)

[Ellie Donnelly, Independent, 3 December]

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‘Person E’: Lecturer gets legal advice following University of Limerick report

Posted in Legal issues on December 4th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“One of the people named in the recent Higher Education Authority report into controversies at the University of Limerick is ‘awaiting legal advice’ following the report’s release this November 8. Person E is receiving legal counsel, after the former lecturer’s case was raised and UL’s HR conduct heavily criticised by Dr Richard Thorn in the report …” (more)

[Maria Flannery, Limerick Leader, 2 December]

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Ex-UCD student found guilty of sex assault on Tinder date at campus

Posted in Legal issues on December 1st, 2017 by steve

Ireland“A former UCD student found guilty of sexually assaulting a woman he met on Tinder has been registered as a sex offender …” (more)

[Eimear Cotter, Herald, 1 December]

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Dutch university says student cannot defend PhD dressed as pirate

Posted in Legal issues on November 27th, 2017 by steve

“A researcher has taken a Dutch university to the country’s Institute for Human Rights for not allowing him to defend his PhD dressed as a pirate. Environmental engineer Michael Afanasyev says that he is a priest of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, an organisation that lampoons what it claims are special exemptions for religious people …” (more)

[David Matthews, Times Higher Education, 24 November]

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Former student health director at University of Limerick ‘seeking justice and fair process’

Posted in Legal issues on November 26th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“A medical doctor who was accused of bullying a colleague at the University of Limerick has issued High Court proceedings against UL for defamation and personal damages …” (more)

[Maria Flannery, Limerick Leader, 25 November]

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University of Limerick president lifts suspension on whistleblowers and offers widespread apologies

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on November 24th, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The University of Limerick has lifted its suspension of two whistleblowers who had been suspended with pay for almost two and a half years. The move follows a fortnight on from the publication of the HEA’s Thorn report, a wide-ranging document on the controversies into the governance and HR of the university …” (more)

[Maria Flannery, Limerick Leader, 23 November]

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UL lifts suspension of whistleblowers whose claims sparked inquiry

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on November 23rd, 2017 by steve

Ireland“University of Limerick (UL) is to lift the suspension of two whistleblowers whose allegations helped spark an independent investigation into malpractice claims at the college. The two women, who worked in the university’s finance section, have been suspended on full pay for the past two-and-a-half years …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 23 November]

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UL lifts suspensions on two whistleblowers

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on November 23rd, 2017 by steve

Ireland“The University of Limerick has lifted the suspensions imposed on two whistleblowers who raised issues about irregular practices at the university. The suspensions have been lifted on staff known only as B and C by UL President Dr Des Fitzgerald …” (more)

[RTÉ News, 23 November]

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NUI Galway response to Open Letter fails to refute anything Micheline wrote!

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on November 23rd, 2017 by steve

Ireland“NUI Galway’s response in the media to Micheline’s Open Letter is very interesting and worth studying carefully. Galway Bay FM and the Connacht Tribune both reported that NUI Galway stated there is ‘no connection whatsoever’ between their unsuccessful applications and the legal cases of four colleagues …” (more)

[Micheline’s Three Conditions, 22 November]

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Man accused of sexually assaulting Tinder date at UCD ‘like a monster’, woman tells court

Posted in Legal issues on November 22nd, 2017 by steve

Ireland“A woman has told a court that a man she met through Tinder was like a ‘monster’ when he allegedly attacked her in his car. The 36-year-old man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has pleaded not guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to sexual assault of the foreign national at UCD campus, Belfield, south Dublin on July 23, 2014 …” (more)

[Declan Brennan, Independent, 22 November]

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