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The GENERAL BOARD beg leave to report to the University as follows:
1. The quantitative assessment of risk is a key factor in contemporary human endeavour. Confronting uncertainty is necessary in the assessment of evidence and the taking of decisions, whether by government, industry, academia, courts of law, or society at large. A basic training in the science of risk is important in all such spheres of activity. The appropriate scientific language is that of probability and statistics, in which field members of the University have since the time of Sir Ronald Fisher been very active. The University has recognized through the Millennium Mathematics Project and cognate activities that it has a special function and responsibility for education beyond Cambridge, and only few topics can claim to be as generic and deserving in society as the understanding of risk.
2. An opportunity to further develop work in this area has now arisen as the Trustees of the Winton Charitable Foundation have generously agreed to donate at least £3.2m to endow the establishment of a new Professorship, to be called the Winton Professorship of the Public Understanding of Risk. The Council of the School of the Physical Sciences, and the Faculty Board of Mathematics have endorsed the proposal and have recommended that the new Professorship be established and assigned to the Department of Pure Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics. The Faculty Board have confirmed that suitable accommodation is available for the new Professor in the Department.
3. It is proposed that the Professor join the Statistical Laboratory of the Department of Pure Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics, where teaching and research is carried out in theoretical and applied aspects of probability and statistics. Members of the Laboratory are active in many areas of current importance for society and industry, including for example the studies of communication networks, statistics in ecology, quantitative finance, and optimization. The new Professor will be expected to contribute to an expansion of statistics within the University, and also to be a key participant in the outreach activities of the Faculty of Mathematics. The Trustees of the Winton Charitable Foundation have also offered an additional endowment to Churchill College to facilitate the establishment, in perpetuity, of a Professorial Fellowship in the College, into which the holder of the proposed Winton Professorship would be invited to accept election.
4. The General Board are assured that the Professorship can be expected to attract an excellent field of candidates. The Board have agreed that election to the Professorship should be made by an ad hoc Board of Electors and that, on this first occasion, preference should be given to candidates with an established record in theoretical and/or applied aspects of probability and statistics, and who are in a position to develop a programme in an aspect of the public understanding of risk.
5. The General Board recommend:
I. That a Winton Professorship of the Public Understanding of Risk be established in the University from 1 October 2006, placed in Schedule B of the Statutes, and assigned to the Department of Pure Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics.
II. That regulations for a Winton Fund for the Public Understanding of Risk, as set out in the Schedule to this Report, be approved.
|10 May 2006||ALISON RICHARD, Vice-Chancellor||M. J. DAUNTON||MELVEENA MCKENDRICK|
|JOHN BELL||RICHARD FRIEND||ROGER PARKER|
|TOM BLUNDELL||RICHARD HUNTER||PATRICK SISSONS|
|H. A. CHASE||RUTH KEELING||I. H. WHITE|
1. The sum received from the Winton Charitable Foundation for the endowment of a Professorship of the Public Understanding of Risk shall form a fund called the Winton Fund for the Public Understanding of Risk.
2. The Fund shall be administered by three Managers who shall be the Head of the Department of Pure Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics, the Director of the Statistical Laboratory, and the Winton Professor of the Public Understanding of Risk, provided that, if two or more of these posts are held by the same person or if one or more of these posts is vacant, the Faculty Board of Mathematics shall appoint one or more additional Managers so as to ensure that there are three Managers.
3. The first charge on the income of the Fund shall be the stipend, national insurance, pension contributions, and associated indirect costs of the Professor payable by the University.
4. After provision has been made in accordance with Regulation 3, the income of the Fund may be applied to support the activities of the Professorship in such a manner as shall be approved by the General Board on the recommendation of the Managers.
5. Any unexpended income for a financial year may (i) be accumulated and added to the capital of the Fund, or (ii) be held as an income reserve and, in any one or more subsequent years, expended in accordance with Regulations 3 and 4, or (iii) be used to promote teaching and research in mathematics including, in particular, the public understanding of risk and mathematics in such a manner as shall be approved by the General Board on the recommendation of the Managers.
6. If in any year the income of the Fund is insufficient to meet the expenses set out in Regulations 3 and 4, the Managers with the approval of the Faculty Board of Mathematics may use all or such part or parts of the capital of the Fund as they shall determine for or towards such expenses.
7. If the General Board are satisfied on the recommendation of the Faculty Board of Mathematics that funding the Professorship as set out in Regulations 3 and 4 no longer provides a suitable and effective method of using the Fund, the University shall have power to resolve to hold the capital and income of the Fund on trust for the promotion of teaching and research in mathematics including, in particular, the public understanding of risk and mathematics.
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Cambridge University Reporter 9 August 2006
Copyright © 2011 The Chancellor, Masters and Scholars of the University of Cambridge.