Govt Leaves Door Open to Flexibility on Restructuring of College Board

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on May 7th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“The government has today left the door open to more flexibility in how Trinity is governed in the future, likely easing concerns that the department would grant the Higher Education Authority (HEA) sweeping powers to control how College is run …” (more)

[Cormac Watson, University Times, 6 May]

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Colleges face sanctions for funding non-compliance

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on May 7th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Colleges that do not comply with funding conditions will face sanctions, including having their grants withheld, under new published legislation aimed at reforming the governance of the Higher Education sector. Under the legislation, the Higher Education Authority (HEA) will be able to set conditions for funding third-level institutions and guidelines on how much of a university’s budget should be applied to its different activities …” (more)

[Jess Casey, Irish Examiner, 6 May]

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‘Sweeping reforms’ not to threaten autonomy of universities

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on May 7th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“The Government has insisted that sweeping governance changes to the higher education sector will safeguard the autonomy of universities and protect academic freedom. Minister for Higher Education Simon Harris published the Higher Education Authority Bill (2021) on Thursday which amount to the biggest shake-up in third level governance in 50 years …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 6 May]

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We shouldn’t take the independence of our universities for granted

Posted in Governance and administration on May 4th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“The great Renaissance humanist Erasmus said he longed to be a citizen of the world. I’ve always liked this quote because it sums up so much of the university ideal. Universities have been reaching out into the world for centuries – something that benefits both the institutions themselves and the country as a whole …” (more)

[Patrick Prendergast, Irish Times, 4 May]

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Cabinet to consider third-level governance and minimum alcohol prices

Posted in Governance and administration on May 4th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“The Cabinet is expected on Tuesday to approve draft laws on university governance, which would increase centralised supervision and give a regulator the power to fine colleges for breaching rules. The laws, to be introduced by Minister for Higher Education Simon Harris, aim to redraw the relationship between government and the institutions for the first time since the 1970s …” (more)

[Pat Leahy and Marie O’Halloran, Irish Times, 4 May]

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Govt Must Listen to Trinity’s Case for an Exemption From Board Restructuring

Posted in Governance and administration on March 29th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“This week, The University Times reported on Trinity’s submission to the government on the proposed reforms of drafted legislation which would overhaul College’s governance structures. In the submission, Trinity outlined a swathe of reasons as to why it should be exempt from the proposed legislation, including existing traditions and a ‘distinct context and legal heritage’ that distinguishes it from other universities …” (more)

[University Times, 28 March]

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How horrible are we? More sweeping reforms for academics to look forward to

Posted in Governance and administration on March 28th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“The basis for these changes is of course, familiar enough, throughout the English-speaking world. The important thing, apparently, is to ensure that academics can never ultimately be masters of their own house. At the most strategic level of governance, academics must always be outvoted by non academics. You don’t hear the same demands made of doctors or lawyers …” (more)

[conradbrunstrom, 27 March]

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Universities fear sweeping reforms will undermine autonomy

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on March 26th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Universities are concerned that sweeping Government reforms aimed at strengthening the accountability of higher education institutions will restrict their autonomy. The Irish Times reported on Thursday that Trinity College Dublin has expressed alarm that the planned reforms could damage its academic standing and end its tradition of collegiate governance …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 25 March]

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Trinity seeks legislation to exclude it from sweeping Government reforms

Posted in Governance and administration, Legal issues on March 25th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Trinity College Dublin is seeking private legislation to exclude it from sweeping Government reforms aimed at strengthening the accountability of higher education institutions. In an unpublished submission to Government, it says planned changes threaten to undermine its autonomy, damage its academic standing and end its tradition of ‘collegiate governance’, which has served the college well for over 400 years …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 25 March]

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Proposed Governance Restructuring is Bullish, Ill-Timed and Rushed

Posted in Governance and administration on March 9th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Last November, Minister for Higher Education Simon Harris said that current legislation regarding higher education governance is ‘not fit for purpose and does not reflect the world in which we live’ – his bullish solution to this issue, however, overreaches and is a threat to Trinity as we know it …” (more)

[University Times, 7 March]

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Trinity College Dublin fears third-level reforms will threaten its autonomy

Posted in Governance and administration on March 8th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Trinity College Dublin has expressed alarm over Government plans to reform university governance which it says could threaten its autonomy and independence. The university said it wants to be excluded from planned legislation that would give regulators ‘dawn raid’ powers to conduct audits and abolish its long-standing systems for resolving internal disputes which date back hundreds of years …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 8 March]

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If Harris has his way, Irish universities will surrender their valuable independence

Posted in Governance and administration on March 4th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Tomorrow Minister for Further and Higher Education Simon Harris will close the door for submissions to his document on the reform of Higher Education Authority (HEA) legislation. The minister opened consultations on February 23 …” (more)

[Sean Barrett, Independent, 4 March]

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University Autonomy is Under Threat. Colleges Must Step Up

Posted in Governance and administration on February 1st, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Alarm bells sounded last week when this newspaper reported that the government is considering a bill which would give the Minister for Higher Education the power to suspend or replace the governing bodies of a state-funded universities if it has serious concerns about how the institution is being run …” (more)

[University Times, 31 January]

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Universities face stronger governance and accountability requirements

Posted in Governance and administration on October 24th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Stronger governance and accountability measures for third-level institutions will be contained in new legislation to be published next year, Minister for Higher Education Simon Harris has said. Speaking at a conference organised by the Irish Universities Association (IUA), he said the agility and flexibility of colleges were key strengths, and this required an appropriate level of autonomy …” (more)

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

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Higher Education Minister Simon Harris promises more freedom for universities

Posted in Governance and administration on October 24th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Higher Education Minister Simon Harris says he wants to give universities more freedom over their affairs but that it must go hand in hand with greater accountability. It was one of the themes in his first major policy speech since taking on the role of leading the first full government department with responsibility for higher education …” (more)

[Katherine Donnelly, Independent, 23 October]

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At Funding-Heavy Third-Level Debate, More Squabbles than Solutions

Posted in Governance and administration on February 3rd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Political discussions about higher education, it seems, are a bit like buses: you wait ages for one and then suddenly you have politicians and stakeholders in the same room, publicly debating how best to tackle the sector’s many issues …” (more)

[University Times, 2 February]

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Former UCD president calls Brexit a ‘national crisis’ regards higher education

Posted in Governance and administration on October 4th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“The former president of University College Dublin has called for immediate action to address a ‘national crisis’ ahead of Brexit. Now the Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Bristol, Hugh Brady spoke at the British Irish Chamber of Commerce earlier today, insisting that the ‘state of Ireland’s higher education and research system should be viewed as a national crisis’ …” (more)

[Rebecca Stiffe, Irish Examiner, 4 October]

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Bill threatens autonomy of universities

Posted in Governance and administration on October 3rd, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Sir, – The proposed changes to university governance by the Higher Education Authority Bill will severely damage the academic authority of the Irish universities. The proposed modifications to the Universities Act of 1997 are particularly to be deplored …” (more)

[Sarah Alyn Stacey, Irish Times, 3 October]

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Provost: New Government Oversight a ‘Risk’ to University Autonomy

Posted in Governance and administration on August 6th, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Provost Patrick Prendergast has warned that new government legislation on higher education could jeopardise the autonomy of universities – a move he said could ‘damage’ the sector. In an interview with the Irish Times during a recent trip to Africa, Prendergast said universities highly value their independence …” (more)

[Donal MacNamee, University Times, 6 August]

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The Irish Times view on third-level reform: university autonomy should be protected

Posted in Governance and administration on July 22nd, 2019 by steve

Ireland“Government plans to introduce greater accountability for the third-level sector, which receives about €1.5 billion in public funding, make sense on the face of it. The Dáil’s Public Accounts Committee has raked over dozens of high-profile examples of inappropriate spending by third-level institutions in recent years …” (more)

[Irish Times, 21 July]

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