Sep 11 2018
Our recent strategy refresh made a commitment to strengthening our academic reputation, delivering excellent teaching and research, ensuring that Royal Holloway is sustainable, and enabling a distinctive campus community.

This week we are launching a consultation on a proposal to create a new academic structure in which faculties are dissolved and we create seven to ten schools.

The aim is to enhance the student experience and give newly created Heads of School greater control over their budget and more involvement in strategic decisions. Schools would also have clearer authority to successfully manage teaching and research development within appropriate frameworks. The proposed approach will support more agile ways of working, allowing us to respond more quickly and effectively to the rapidly changing higher education environment.

Feedback, both through the staff survey and in my many conversations with colleagues, makes it clear that there is an appetite among all colleagues for simpler and more transparent governance and improved engagement and collaboration across the College. For example, in the 2016 staff engagement survey, over 60% of respondents felt that there are too many approvals needed for routine decisions and only 38% of colleagues who responded felt, on the whole, the different parts of the College communicate effectively with each other.

Creating schools will give Heads of School the ability to operate at a more strategic level and, by being more involved in key decision making committees, to be more able to represent the needs of the school as a whole and the departments within the school. Replacing faculties with schools would maintain the strengths of departments and their academic relationships with students, while releasing academic colleagues from some elements of administration that would transfer to the school. 

The consultation runs until Friday 12 October and you are invited to meetings on the 12 September and 20 September to find out more and take part.

Katie Normington,
Senior Vice-Principal (Academic)