Campaign news, Thursday 13 May


The Middlesex University Branch of the University and College Union (UCU) held a Special Meeting yesterday (12 May) to discuss the closure of the Philosophy programmes. Members expressed their unanimous support for the Campaign to Save Philosophy at Middlesex, and agreed to put forward a motion of ‘No Confidence in the Management of the School of Arts and Education’ to the Branch AGM.  Information emerged about the failure to follow established procedures during the process leading up the decision of closure, in what was described as a ‘rogue’ School within the University administrative system.


Later in the day, the Philosophy students in the ninth day of their occupation of the Mansion Building on the Trent Park campus invited all campus staff into the occupied building for a meeting to explain their actions and ask for support.

It emerged during the meeting that administrative staff who normally work in the occupied building had received no instructions from School management about how to proceed with their jobs during the occupation, despite requests to line managers.


Throughout the 17-day period since the announcement of the closure of all undergraduate and postgraduate programmes and research degrees in Philosophy – Middlesex University’s highest research-rated subject area – and the de facto collapse of the university’s policy of “supporting excellence in research”, Prof. Waqar Ahmad, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor responsible for Research, has maintained a deafening silence. Nobody appears to know what the University’s Research Policy currently is.

Professor Peter Osborne, Director of the Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy (CRMEP) and Research Convenor for Philosophy, confirmed that he had received no communications from Prof. Ahmad regarding the de facto reversal of University Research Policy, the future of the CRMEP, or the university’s spending plans for 2010-11 for the annual research income allocated to it by HEFCE for Philosophy as a result of the Research Assessment Exercise (£173,260 in 2009-10).


Thirty professors from across the University have written collectively to the Executive “to protest in the strongest possible terms at the plans to close Philosophy at the University”.

The termly meeting of University Professors with Prof. Ahmad and others members of the University Executive take place on the morning of Tuesday 1 June. Given the damage done to the reputation of the University, nationally and internationally, by its decision to close all Philosophy programmes, it is likely to be an eventful meeting.


About suicideally

DJ, philosophy student, flâneuse.
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5 Responses to Campaign news, Thursday 13 May

  1. Pingback: Middlesex: the Union enters the fray « Box 3, Spool 5

  2. Bobby says:

    it is very upliting to read that 30 Proffesors are backing the Philosophy department. Especially so as they are doing so openly. Well dne! keep up the good work :)

  3. Jacqui Thewless says:

    The direction your campaign is now taking is precisely the route which I suggested would be most fruitful. Well done!! Again, I would strongly urge you to involve the support of legal experts who can make the best possible test-case in this outrageous affair.

  4. Jacqui Thewless says:

    I cannot sufficiently stress the importance of a legal approach which, with meticulous expertise, could be applied in this case (and, importantly, in any future case of similar kind). It goes without saying that the campaign must have a successful outcome if democratic rights connected with the integrity of education are not to be disconnected. On the contrary, the connection ought to be made stronger, through the widest possible extension of the public campaign and, I think, through a legal case brought against those persons whose bad management has caused an international scandal of unprecedented scale.

  5. Pingback: News from Middlesex | Progressive Geographies

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