Skip to main contentCambridge University Reporter

No 6448

Thursday 8 December 2016

Vol cxlvii No 14

pp. 200–265

Annual Report of the Council for the academical year 2015–16

The Council begs leave to report to the University as follows:

In accordance with Statute A IV 1(c), the Council makes the following Annual Report to the University.

The Chancellor

Lord Sainsbury of Turville has visited the University frequently over the year, including visits to Colleges and academic departments. He presided at the Guild of Benefactors Ceremony and the Honorary Degrees Congregation. He opened the Maxwell Centre, the Dyson Building, the Crausaz Wordsworth Building at Robinson College, and Leckhampton Hall and Kitchens at Leckhampton Court, Corpus Christi College. Lord Sainsbury attended the Campaign Launch Event in Cambridge, the ‘Ideas to Reality’ Event organized by Cambridge Enterprise, and the Addenbrooke’s Hospital 250th anniversary celebration. He visited Clare College, Cambridge Econometrics, the Faculty of History, and attended a tour at the Sanger Centre.

The Vice-Chancellor

(i) Major engagements in 2015–16

The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz FRS, addressed the University on 1 October 2015 on Partnership, noting the importance of collaboration at a local and regional level, as well as with industry, and with international and philanthropic partners, in order for the University to fulfil its mission. Speaking on the ’Advancement of science in Africa through Education’ at the Next Einstein Forum in Dakar in March 2016 he also encouraged policy-makers and scientists in Africa to form global partnerships and strategic alliances to overcome the challenges their countries face. In his speech at the Closing Ceremony at the College of Europe in Natolin in June 2016 he emphasized the importance of European partnerships in Higher Education against the backdrop of the referendum on Britain’s membership in the European Union. The Vice-Chancellor has also undertaken many national and overseas engagements on the University’s behalf, travelling to several European countries, China, Hong Kong, India, Senegal, Singapore, and the United States. There was a ceremony for the conferment of honorary degrees on 3 February 2016 at which His Excellency, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, had been admitted to an honorary doctorate of law and over which the Vice-Chancellor presided.

(ii) Nomination of a Vice-Chancellor from 1 October 2017

In 2015 the Council initiated the process for the nomination of a Vice-Chancellor to succeed Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz from 1 October 2017. An Advisory Committee was established with Professor Ian White, Master of Jesus College and a member of the Council, as Chair. A series of open meetings was held in February 2016 to solicit views on the search and the attributes that the University should seek in the next Vice-Chancellor.1 The Council received regular updates on the Committee’s work. A Grace proposing the appointment of Professor Stephen John Toope, T, A.B., Harvard, LL.B., B.C.L., McGill, Ph.D., T, Officer of the Order of Canada, as Vice-Chancellor for seven years from 1 October 2017, was approved on 7 October 2016.2

The Pro-Vice-Chancellors

The following took up office in 2015–16: Professor Eilís Ferran, CTH, as Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Institutional and International Relations) for three years from 1 October 2015; and Professor Christopher Abell, CHR, as Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research) and Professor Nigel Slater, F, as Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Enterprise and Regional Affairs) for three years from 1 January 2016.

The Council is grateful to Dr Jennifer Barnes, MUR, and Professor Lynn Gladden, T, for their distinguished service since 1 January 2010 as, respectively, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (International Strategy) and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research), and to Professor Duncan Maskell, W, and Professor Graham Virgo, DOW, for their service as Pro-Vice-Chancellors during the academical year.

The Council and its committees

(i) The Council: responsibilities and operation

The Council is defined by Statute A as the principal executive and policy-making body of the University, having general responsibility for the administration of the University, for the planning of its work, and for the management of its resources. It is declared to have power to take such action as is necessary for it to discharge these responsibilities. It also performs such other executive and administrative duties as may be delegated to it by the Regent House or assigned to it by Statute, Special Ordinance, or Ordinance. As the persons having responsibility for the general control and management of the administration of the University, members of the Council are regarded as the charity trustees of the University.

The Council’s Statement of Primary Responsibilities (annexed to this Report) is reviewed annually together with its Standing Orders, the Code of Practice for members of the Council, and the Statement of Corporate Governance.

The Council continues to discharge its responsibilities through ordinary regular meetings (eleven each year) and, as necessary, special meetings (of which there were none in 2015–16); scrutiny of business through the Business Committee, the Advisory Committee on Benefactions and External and Legal Affairs (ACBELA), and other committees, notably the Finance Committee and the Audit Committee; and through receipt and approval of routine business by circulation. Business is monitored and managed through the regular consideration of work plans. The Council has continued to hold two strategic meetings each year, one in September and one in the spring. Papers received by the Council (except where reserved or otherwise restricted for reasons such as commercial confidentiality) are available to members and staff of the University on the Council’s website at

(ii) Council membership

In the Easter Term 2016, the Regent House approved the reappointment of Professor Dame Shirley Pearce and Ms Sara Weller as external members of the Council in class (e).3

There were also bye-elections in classes (a) and (c). The membership until 31 December 2015 and from 1 January 2016 is attached as Annex A.

(iii) Routine reporting to the Council

During 2015–16, the Council received a progress report on the North West Cambridge Project at its meetings from October–May, after which the Council agreed to receive quarterly reports starting from October 2016. The Council received quarterly reports from the Remuneration Committee. Cambridge University Press and the Local Examinations Syndicate (Cambridge Assessment) report annually to the Council; the respective Chief Executive Officers and the Chairs of the Syndicates attend to present their reports and to answer questions.4 The Director of External Affairs and Communications and the Executive Director of University Development and Alumni Relations also report annually or more regularly as necessary on the work of their offices.

(iv) Retirement of Registrary

Following Dr Jonathan Nicholls’ announcement, on 18 April 2016, of his decision to retire on 31 December 2016, the Council initiated the process to identify his successor as Registrary. The Council is grateful to Dr Nicholls for his distinguished service to the Council and to the University as Registrary and Head of the Unified Administrative Service since 2007.

After advertisement and a search process supported by recruitment consultants, the Council decided not to appoint substantively to the office and agreed to appoint Emma Rampton, currently Academic Secretary, as Acting Registrary under Statute C VI 5 for a period of two years from 1 January 2017.

(v) Statement of investment responsibility

In June 2016, the Council received the report of a working group established by the Advisory Committee on Benefactions and External and Legal Affairs to review the University’s statement of investment responsibility. The statement, which was adopted in 2008, guides the work of the Investment Board and the University’s Investment Office in the management of the CUEF. The Council endorsed the group’s recommendations, including revisions to the statement5 and support for participation in a process of continuous engagement with the external managers of University funds, underpinned by a developing model for engaging on environmental, social, and governance issues and by an open letter to those managers from the Vice-Chancellor and the Chief Investment Officer.

(vi) Review of the representation of graduate students in the University

In October 2015, the Council agreed to instigate a review of the representation of graduate students in the University, to consider whether the Graduate Union was the most effective body for providing that representation. A review committee established by the Council under the chairship of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education) reported to the Council in February 2016. The review committee concluded that there continued to be a case for retaining two separate Unions in the short term and that the Graduate Union was, in its current manifestation, providing effective representation for graduate students. The Council endorsed the review committee’s view and also agreed that there should be an integrated administrative structure serving both Unions and that consideration should be given to increasing the number of joint services, with further discussions between the Unions facilitated initially by the review committee, which would remain in place for this purpose. The Council agreed that there should be a further review within five years (or less, if necessary) to revisit the question of whether two Unions were required.

(vii) Arrangements for approving market pay

The Council, in February 2016, published a Report proposing changes to the arrangements for approving market pay.6 The changes concerned the raising of the threshold at which committee approval was required for an award of market pay, in addition to the approval of the officers. Following a ballot, the recommendations of the Report were not approved (362 votes in favour, 707 votes against). The HR Committee has approved the establishment of a new remuneration working group to take forward the work of the market pay working group and to look more broadly at remuneration issues. The overarching aim remains to ensure that pay and reward polices, practices, and procedures fully support the University’s aspiration to attract and retain outstanding staff and are transparent and consistent.

(viii) Review of the University’s retirement policy

In July 2016, the General Board and the Council received the recommendations of a review group established in June 2015 to review the University’s retirement policy. It agreed to maintain the Employer Justified Retirement Age (EJRA) of 67 but with some adjustments to the stated aims and the criteria for evaluating requests beyond the EJRA.7

(ix) Proposals concerning the public display of class-lists and related matters

In the early Easter Term 2016, the Council and the General Board approved the publication of a Report proposing changes to the sharing of information about class-lists, including the discontinuation of the public display of class-lists outside the Senate-House.8 In July, following receipt of comments made by the Colleges’ Committee, the Council and the General Board agreed to remove from the Report those recommendations relating to the use of data by the Colleges. A ballot has been called by members of the Regent House on the Report’s remaining recommendations; the vote will take place in the Michaelmas Term 2016.9

(x) Council self-effectiveness review

Regular self-effectiveness reviews enable the Council to reflect on its operations and efficacy. The Council has established a review committee constituted from among the members of the Council to carry out a self-effectiveness review of the Council. The review committee, which is chaired by Mr John Shakeshaft, Deputy Chair of the Council, is expected to report on its recommendations to the Council in the Michaelmas Term 2016.

Governance and constitutional matters

(i) Investigation into the governance and management structures of the North West Cambridge project

As was reported in the 2014–15 Annual Report, in July 2015 the Council endorsed the Finance Committee’s recommendation that the Audit Committee be asked to commission an investigation into the governance and management structures for the North West Cambridge project.

The Council, at its meeting in October 2015, received the first report of the North West Cambridge Audit Group, chaired by external Council member and Audit Committee Chair Mr Mark Lewisohn. This initial report provided an examination of the causes for the projected cost overruns and identification of the reasons why issues were not reported sooner. A Discussion on a Topic of Concern was called by the Council on 3 November 2015,10 and the comments made at the Discussion were taken into account in preparing the Audit Group’s second report. The Council, at its meeting in March 2016, received this second report and endorsed its recommendations, which identified lessons to be learned for the future in undertaking similar large-scale developments, including successive phases of the project.11 The Council has started the process to recruit a Chief Financial Officer, to take overarching financial and strategic responsibility for large commercial undertakings across the University. A Report proposing a restructuring of the West and North West Cambridge Estates Syndicate as a Board, as amended in light of Discussion remarks, was approved by Grace 4 of 13 July 2016.

(ii) Review of student disciplinary procedures

The Review Committee on Student Discipline is expected to report on further proposals to revise the student disciplinary framework in 2016–17, after proposals for consideration of cases concerning student complaints of harassment and sexual assault have been submitted to the Regent House in the Michaelmas Term 2016.

(iii) Approval of amending Statutes

Amendments to provisions in Statute D I and II concerning student discipline were approved by Her Majesty in Council on 10 February 2016.12

(iv) Review of three specific areas of governance

The Council has agreed that it will commence a review encompassing the membership of the Regent House, the membership of the Council, and the format of Discussions in accordance with a timetable to be agreed with the Vice-Chancellor appointed from 1 October 2017.

Accountability and audit

(i) Audit Committee membership

The Committee consists of nine members, the majority of whom are external. The Committee is chaired by Mark Lewisohn, an external member of Council (in class (a)). There are two members of Council (in class (b)), four external members (in class (c)), and two co-opted members (in class (d)). Also in attendance at meetings of the Committee are the Chairs of the Cambridge University Press and Cambridge Assessment Audit Committees, senior University officers including the Registrary, the Senior Pro-Vice-Chancellor, and the Director of Finance, the University’s internal auditors and, where relevant to agenda items, the external auditors.

There have been two changes to Audit Committee membership during 2015–16. Dr David Good, who was a member of the Committee in class (b), ended his term on 31 December 2015. His vacancy was filled by Council member Reverend Jeremy Caddick, who joined in January 2016. Professor Nigel Slater, who was a member of the Committee in class (d), completed his term at the end of 2015 before taking up the role of Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Enterprise and Regional Affairs). Following agreement at the May 2016 meeting, Professor John Dennis, Head of the Department of Chemical Engineering and Technology, was co-opted on to the Committee to replace Professor Slater; he attended his first meeting in June.

The Council is grateful to all current and former members who give their time and expertise in support of the Audit Committee’s work.

(ii) Internal audit function

Deloitte LLP was reappointed for three years with effect from 1 August 2014 to provide the University’s internal audit function. This was subject to a refreshed approach to their service, which included an increased focus on priority risk areas aligned with the University’s Key Risk Register, a broader insight from specialist and senior input, and greater self-assurance by Schools and Departments. The self-assurance has taken the form of a survey developed to reflect key risk areas and data analytics to give assurance on Departments’ compliance with key processes in high risk areas.

The second full exercise of the Departmental assurance survey ran smoothly in 2015–16 with a 100% response rate. The findings were reported to the Audit Committee in June 2016 and were well received. The survey report enables the Audit Committee, administrative offices, and Schools to see at a glance where weaker areas exist by both Department and topic.

Key audits in 2015–16 included master-planning of the estate, international collaborations, sports clubs and events, the student records system, and minor works. Next year’s internal audit plan has been approved and will include the CamSIS re-implementation, cyber-security governance and review, operational planning for North West Cambridge, and the follow-up on the recommendations arising from the Freeling review (see p. 206).

Six audit reports carried limited assurance this year, and in each case a senior officer was invited to attend the meeting, or an existing attendee requested to comment, to give an opportunity for a response to the report and to allow for questions. In particular, the Audit Committee heard directly from the Academic Secretary and the Head of Graduate Student Administration on the graduate and exam progression audit, from the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education) on the sports clubs and events audit, and from the Director of Estate Strategy on the minor works audit reports.

(iii) Reappointment of external auditors

Market testing of the external auditors is required by HEFCE to be carried out every seven years, and appointment/reappointment of external auditors was due in 2015–16. A sub-group of the Committee, chaired by Ms Legrand, met in May 2015 to consider the approach to market testing of the external audit function. On the basis of positive feedback reports on PwC’s performance and Value for Money benchmarking papers for external audit provision in the HE sector, the Sub-group decided not to proceed to a full re-tender, but to consider continuing with PwC for the next three years. HEFCE had previously agreed that market testing did not necessarily require a full tender exercise.

PwC were asked for their proposals to refresh and enhance their service and gave a presentation on this to the Committee at its November meeting. The Committee subsequently agreed to recommend the reappointment of PwC as the University’s external auditors until 2018.

(iv) Risk, emergency, and continuity management

Risk management is a standing item on the Audit Committee’s agenda. The University’s Key Risk Register is updated and reviewed by the Risk Steering Committee, which meets twice a year. The Risk Steering Committee is chaired by the Senior Pro-Vice-Chancellor.

Risk management training is provided twice a year through the University’s Personal and Professional Development training programme. Tailored sessions to individual institutions or groups are also given where requested or suggested.

Emergency Action Plans are now completed for all but a few institutions whose plans are in progress. All 31 departments classed as high risk (for example, because they contain high value assets, house essential information, contain animal houses, or host material subject to Anti-Terrorist Crime and Security Act legislation) have plans in place.

Emergency Action Plans are being transferred from the previous online repository to Estate Management’s Micad system. This system contains detailed building plans and compliance documents and thus provides a natural platform for hosting the plans. The system also shows information about departmental occupancy of buildings, enabling any missing Plans to be readily identified.

In collaboration with University Information Services (UIS), work has proceeded on equipping the University’s Silver Team with essential IT facilities to assist the Team in an emergency. Two new incident management rooms with modernized facilities have been established. Work is now underway to consider a new option for the primary incident room, which has the potential to offer even greater resilience as an emergency planning location.

The University Silver Team was led through a desktop exercise on crisis communications by an external consultant, Mr Donald Steel, in January 2016. A sub-set of the Silver Team was convened in May and June 2016 following two separate incidents.

(v) Policy against bribery and corruption

The Committee received an annual review of the University’s policy against bribery and corruption. There had been no reports of bribery and only one case of financial fraud in the University, which was under the threshold that required reporting to HEFCE. Cambridge University Press identified one case of fraud, which was reported to HEFCE since it was over the threshold. Cambridge Assessment had no cases to report.

Training via the online Bribery and Corruption training module has continued with areas of weaker participation targeted. Monitoring of training participation overall continues. Online guidance across the University is being updated to ensure that there is consistent advice on who should undertake training and how frequently. Procurement contracts have been reviewed to ensure that appropriate anti-bribery clauses have been incorporated. A comprehensive review of other forms of contract will now be undertaken.

There was one case of whistleblowing in the University. Following a full review by HR, the claims were considered to be unsubstantiated.

(vi) Assurance on the Colleges’ use of HEFCE funds transferred by the University to the Colleges for educational purposes

As part of the overall process of seeking assurance on the Colleges’ use of HEFCE funds, an annual meeting is held with representatives from the Colleges. The Director of Finance reported that his annual exercise to compare Colleges’ total fee income and restricted funds income with expenditure on education provided assurance concerning the application of funds transferred.

The Chair of the Value for Money Sub-committee of the Bursars’ Committee reported on different inter-collegiate value for money exercises such as energy purchasing, joint training events, and joint event organization. IT was a significant feature of collaboration between the University and Colleges. It was noted that there was cross-representation on both University and College committees that looked at value for money activities.

(vii) Audit Committee presentations

During 2014–15 the Committee agreed that it was beneficial to seek alternative sources of assurance by inviting senior staff to present at Committee meetings, particularly in areas corresponding to the University’s key risks. As part of this cycle, the Committee received the following presentations:

8 October 2015 – The Head of the International Strategy Office, Dr Toby Wilkinson, spoke about the University’s international strategy and the management of risks in relation to its international activities.

14 January 2016 – The Managing Director of BAE Systems Intelligence, Mr Kevin Taylor, gave an external view on cyber security risks and mitigating actions. The Director of the UIS, Dr Martin Bellamy, followed with a presentation on actions taken with respect to cyber security.

10 March 2016 – The Senior Pro-Vice-Chancellor gave a current assessment of the risks on the Key Risk Register which he owned (Financial Health, Key Infrastructure, Estate).

5 May 2016 – The Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education) gave a current assessment of the risks on the Key Risk Register which he owned (Student Access/Admissions and Student Experience and Quality Assurance).

30 June 2016 – The Director of Health, Safety, and Regulated Facilities, Dr Martin Vinnell, discussed the development of his Division and associated key risks.

This year senior officers were also invited to attend relevant meetings to supplement and take questions on two of the annual reports received by the Committee. The Head of the University Research Office and two colleagues attended to discuss their report on Research Grants Sponsors Audits at the March meeting and one of the joint Heads of Legal Services attended for the discussion of the Annual Report on Bribery and Corruption at the June meeting.

The Vice-Chancellor gave his annual report to the Committee at its January meeting.

(viii) Audit Committee workshops

A workshop on pensions, with particular focus on USS, was held at Trinity Hall on 6 July 2016. The University’s independent actuary, Mr Jonathan Seed of Xafinity Consulting, gave a presentation in which he highlighted the University’s pension commitments and associated risks. Mr Howard Jacobs, Chair of the Trustees of the Cambridge University Assistants’ Contributory Pension Scheme, contributed to discussions.

(ix) North West Cambridge Audit Group

As reported above (p. 204), the North West Cambridge Audit Group produced two reports, both of which were received by the Audit Committee for discussion prior to consideration by the Council. Mr David Parsons, Deputy Director of Legal Services and the Secretary to the Audit Group, attended for the discussion of the Group’s first report, and Mr Parsons also attended for discussion of the second report. Mr David Savage, Senior Manager at PwC, also attended the former meeting to discuss the PwC’s investigative report, which had been commissioned in advance of the Audit Group’s work.

(x) Audit Committee effectiveness review

At its January 2016 meeting, the Committee agreed to commission an external consultant to conduct a review of the Committee’s own effectiveness, after considering a Leadership Foundation Report into the effectiveness of HEI Audit Committees. The review involved individual interviews with all members and regular attendees of the Committee. The consultant also observed a meeting. The consultant’s report will be submitted to the Committee early in the Michaelmas Term.

Government policy and the national environment

(i) EU referendum

Following the result of the referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union on 23 June 2016, discussions with senior figures in government and higher education, and other stakeholders, are ongoing to give due prominence to critical issues facing this University and the sector as a whole.

In the short term, the first aim has been to ensure that the University provides accurate and up-to-date information to current and prospective staff and students, with a website at providing answers to the most common questions and access to sources of additional information. An EU Working Group, with a membership drawn from across the collegiate University and chaired by the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research), is considering the operational issues and will continue to model the impacts as further announcements are made by the government.

More widely, the Council has reaffirmed the University’s position as a diverse, international and, above all, tolerant community, which deplores any form of racism.

(ii) National funding and financial considerations

On 2 June 2016 the Office for Fair Access (OFFA) announced the fee caps for 2017–1813 applicable to institutions eligible for and wishing to take part in the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). The General Board and the Council, with the support of the Colleges’ Committee, agreed to participate in TEF 1, the first year of implementation of the TEF, and an increase to the fees to £9,250 in 2017–18 was approved by Grace 1 of 13 July 2016.

Following publication of a Green Paper and further consultation with the sector, a Higher Education and Research Bill to implement a restructuring of the governance of higher education and research has reached the committee stage in the House of Commons.

(iii) City Deal

In 2015–16, as a partner of the Greater Cambridge City Deal working with the local authorities and the Local Enterprise Partnership, the University has been actively supporting the programme’s aim to ensure that Cambridge has the transport infrastructure, housing, and skills it needs to support its growth.

The City Deal partnership has been putting forward proposals on a number of transport infrastructure schemes, which the University has advised on through its representation on the Executive and Programme Boards. These include improving cycle and bus routes in, out, and around Cambridge, and tackling city centre congestion.

(iv) Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015

The Council and the General Board have established a Prevent Committee to advise on meeting the requirements of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 and the guidance made under the Act’s authority.14 In January 2016, the Council, as the body formally responsible for compliance under the legislation, approved an initial self-assessment and, in July 2016, a more detailed paper including a risk register and action plan, for submission to the HEFCE. Most of the actions concern the review of existing policies and procedures. A Discussion on a Topic of Concern was called by members of the Regent House on 10 May 2016, to which the Council responded in June 2016.15 The recommendations of a Report proposing the introduction of a University Statement on Freedom of Speech and revisions to the Code of Practice issued under section 43 of the Education (No 2) Act 1986, concerning meetings and public gatherings, were approved by Grace 8 of 13 July 2016. All of these provisions and materials will be subject to ongoing monitoring and review by the Prevent Committee and the Council.

Teaching and research

Teaching and research are the responsibility of the General Board and of the Schools, Faculties, and Departments. The General Board reports annually to the Council; the Board’s report for 2015–16 is annexed to this Report and provides a detailed commentary.

Cambridge Assessment and Cambridge University Press

(ii) Governance

As was reported in last year’s Report, the Council established a review group, under the chairship of Dr Anthony Freeling, President of Hughes Hall, to define an overarching long-term corporate and governance strategy for Cambridge University Press and Cambridge Assessment. A group chaired by Mr John Shakeshaft, Deputy Chair of the Council, was constituted in order to advise the Finance Committee and the Council on the Freeling report’s recommendations. The Council agreed that these two businesses have contributed significantly to the reputation, finances, and educational life of the University. It also agreed that the University, through Council and senior leadership, has to improve its engagement with its commercial operations. An implementation group has been established under the chairship of the Senior Pro-Vice-Chancellor, with representation from the Local Examination Syndicate and the Press Syndicate, to take forward arrangements for a proposed Commercial Board to oversee the University’s business operations.

(ii) Cambridge Assessment (CA)

The Council annually receives a report from Cambridge Assessment.

Cambridge Assessment’s preliminary results for 2015–16 show a 7% growth in income to £396m; an operating surplus of £63m; and an anticipated transfer of £18.5m to the University. The two international businesses continue to perform well and between them now account for 80% of CA’s income. The UK market remains challenging and OCR’s income declined this year, which was in line with expectations given the various issues it faces.

In order to maintain position and performance, CA is investing as follows: in systems’ infrastructure; in expanding the portfolio of digital initiatives; in a more extensive and better resourced international network of offices; and in rationalizing and improving office accommodation in Cambridge.

CA has a number of important partnerships both within the University and more widely. The most significant external partnership is with the British Council, which supports the distribution of CIE’s (Cambridge International Examinations) qualifications worldwide and is one of the three IELTS16 partners.

The development of new office accommodation on the Triangle site remains on track with an anticipated occupation date in late 2017 / early 2018. This development will accommodate all Cambridge-based staff in a single location and provide sufficient space to absorb planned growth.

CA anticipates that income will grow at a faster rate over the next five years and that the operating surplus will double. 30% of the annual operating surplus is transferred to the University and applied for capital purposes. The transfer to the University over the next five years (plus the current year) is forecast to be in the region of £190m, which includes the estimated value of the central Cambridge buildings occupied currently by CA that will transfer to the University estate once CA has moved to the Triangle site. There will be continued investment in research, technology, product development, infrastructure, and staff, although capital expenditure is expected to fall significantly once the Triangle site is occupied and SAP implementation is complete.

(iii) Cambridge University Press (CUP)

The Council annually receives a report from Cambridge University Press. The Chair of the Press Syndicate and the Chief Executive of CUP attended the Council’s meeting on 21 November 2016.

The Press’s sales in the financial year to 30 April 2016 were £269m. At constant currency (taking out the impact of fluctuations in foreign exchange) this equated to sales growth of 1.5%. Operating profit before exceptional one-off costs was flat at £6.5m.

In line with other publishers the Press has had to respond to continued rapid changes in market conditions and an uncertain global economy. The digital revolution has continued through 2015–16 for all publishers. The Press reports that digital and blended products and services continue to grow at a rate of around 20% per annum, and now account for one third of its revenues. Over 90% of the Press’s revenues in this period were from outside the UK, with 36% coming from developing markets.

The Academic publishing environment has remained challenging due to ongoing changes to markets and constrained library budgets. The Press’s Academic group has been developing its new online platform Cambridge Core to enhance significantly its digital offering. The quality of its publishing has been recognized through the highest number of citations of any publisher and a record number of prizes in the PROSE awards, the world’s most prestigious awards for academic publishing.

The English Language Teaching market has seen rapid change and intensifying competition. There has been strong sales growth in markets such as China, Spain, the Gulf, and Mexico. This year has seen structural changes to streamline the group, to focus people and publishing on key markets, to simplify production processes, to increase investment in new digital products, and to deepen the Press’s partnerships with Cambridge Assessment and the wider University.

The Education group grew its underlying sales by close to 30%, with strong performances in India, Australia, and across the world in international education and education reform.

In a rapidly changing world, the Press’s focus on quality, digital development, growing markets, efficiency, and partnerships across the University of Cambridge is enabling it to deliver its mission: to advance knowledge, learning, and research. Increasingly it does that by helping teachers, students, and researchers unlock their potential through the quality of its research and learning solutions.

West and North West Cambridge Estates Syndicate17

(i) North West Cambridge development

The North West Cambridge development is a key part of the University’s strategy to maintain its global research profile through the development of a vibrant, mixed-use extension to the City, providing affordable and suitable accommodation for University and College staff (primarily postdoctoral researchers), extensive academic and commercial research floor-space, accommodation for postgraduate students, and local centre facilities to support the new community. The development will also provide significant housing and social facilities for the City more generally.

Regular reports to the Council from the West and North West Cambridge Estates Syndicate in 2015–16 have focused on infrastructure and building works, negotiation of commercial arrangements for market housing, the supermarket, the hotel and provision of local centre facilities including the primary school and the community centre. Work has begun to identify and define the priorities for a possible second phase of development at North West Cambridge.

The University of Cambridge Primary School opened on time and to budget in September 2015. In 2015 the school welcomed 120 pupils in reception and years 1 and 2, and in 2016 the school population will grow to 210 pupils. The opening of the School is an important contribution to the social and intellectual value of the project, which has a firmly established relationship with the University through the Faculty of Education. More information about the School can be found at:

Over 1,000 people are now working on the site and two million working hours were logged by May 2016. The majority of the buildings in Phase 1 will be completed in 2017, including 700 homes for University and College staff, 325 student rooms, the community centre, nursery, supermarket, shops, and doctor’s surgery. Developers constructing housing for sale started on site in summer 2016.

The work of the North West Cambridge Audit Group is reported above (p. 206). The resulting reports confirmed the project would still achieve the strategic aims set by the University but also made a number of recommendations as to the future governance and management of the North West Cambridge Development as well as other major University projects. Considerable progress has been made in implementing the recommendations of the Audit Group’s reports, including a review of the reporting arrangements between the Syndicate and other University bodies, the appointment of a new Chair of the Syndicate, the appointment of a full-time Finance Director for the project, a review of the membership of the Syndicate, the transition of the Syndicate to a Board and, significantly, a re-baselining of the entirety of the Phase 1 proposition to reflect appropriate consideration of inflation, contingency requirements, and market conditions.

The governance arrangements for the project now also include a Risk and Audit Committee, which has responsibility for reviewing risks to the project relating to construction, income, and operational matters on a quarterly basis. The Chair of the Board also reports formally to the Council on a quarterly basis.

(ii) West Cambridge development

The Board also has strategic oversight of the adjacent West Cambridge site, which is the University’s opportunity to establish a world-class, well connected research and development environment focused on the physical sciences and technology that benefits Cambridge, the region, and the UK – one that provides facilities that help the University to retain its globally competitive position by continuing to attract and retain the world’s best academics and researchers, as well as supporting entrepreneurship and collaboration with industry.

A planning application has been submitted and is subject to review by the City Council. The new proposals will allow for 383,300 sq.m. of additional academic and commercial research development. This application sets the context for the redevelopment of the Cavendish Laboratory and integration of the Department of Engineering on the West Cambridge site.

The Board will be looking to ensure as far as practicable that the development of both the North West and West Cambridge sites is complementary and that any opportunities which arise from the parallel development of the sites are exploited.

Development and Alumni Relations (CUDAR)

(i) Performance

(a) Fundraising

New funds raised for the University by the end of the financial year 2015–16 totalled £73.9m (the combined total for the University and the Colleges was £210.7m, the highest annual total to date). There were 17 gifts over £1m including four gifts over £5m settled. Compared with the previous five years, 2015–16 was the strongest for £1m+ gifts in terms of amount and number raised. The Council is greatly appreciative of all of those who make gifts in support of the University’s mission and activities.

Now in its second year, the embedded model of fundraising for Schools and Non-School Institutions is continuing to bear fruit, with increased philanthropic prospects and funding and growth of teams in priority areas; an example of the latter is the promising pipeline of gifts that the Cambridge University Health Partners team has developed in less than a year. Across collegiate Cambridge, the understanding and awareness of the importance of philanthropy is growing. There is a close engagement with the academic community in developing large, transformative funding opportunities to attract even greater levels of support for the University’s key priorities.

(b) Alumni engagement

A new strategy to enhance the way the University works with its global network of 450 alumni groups and societies has been developed and is now being implemented. The strategy introduces a partnership arrangement to clarify how the University and Alumni Groups work together and offers an expanded range of support services and tools to enable the groups to have a greater impact.

The alumni benefits programme continues to add value to the University’s relationship with more than 4,000 alumni around the world accessing the JStore-database service offered through the University Library.

(c) Communications

The theme and visual identity for the new campaign was rolled out at the public launch in October 2015 supported by a wide-ranging internal and external campaign communications plan, including the unveiling of the new campaign website and aligned social media. The branding has also been rolled out to all Colleges, including the sharing of key assets on the advancement intranet.

CAM magazine won a silver award in the CASE (Council for the Advancement and Support of Education) Circle of Excellence Awards, scoring very highly both in terms of content and design – a direct result of the magazine’s redesign in September 2015. CAM, which goes to 211,000 alumni globally, is just one of the alumni communications channels. The monthly alumni e-newsletter now goes to 140,000 alumni to support deeper alumni engagement. In the six months to 31 May 2016, more than 101,000 alumni have opened one or more alumni engagement emails. This is up 6% from the previous six months and reflects continued stability of open rates (a key measure of alumni interest in the content presented). Both CAM and the e-newsletter incorporate campaign branding and are critical conduits for sharing information on the campaign to the wider alumni community.

The annual Report to Donors to Collegiate Cambridge was published in June.

(ii) Campaign

During 2015–16, CUDAR delivered three global collegiate campaign celebration events; the first was the launch event in Cambridge on 16–18 October 2015 attended by over 300 donors and supporters. Subsequently, over 750 alumni from all 31 Colleges joined the Vice-Chancellor at campaign celebrations for the University and Colleges of Cambridge in Singapore, Hong Kong, and Beijing during April 2016. The Campaign Launch weekend in Cambridge won a Bronze CASE Circle of Excellence Award for the University of Cambridge.

The Campaign Board met in October 2015, March 2016, and June 2016, and work has continued to plan the expansion of membership of the Campaign Board to new seven-figure donors. The Board has agreed the formation of new campaign fundraising committees in support of campaign priorities, with the priority committees identified for the Cavendish Laboratory redevelopment on the West Cambridge site (Cavendish III) and for Medicine. These committees will engage directly with academic leadership (the Head of Department/School and other key academic champions), supported by the CUDAR leadership, and the relevant School fundraiser and campaign team. The Cambridge in America Board has agreed to be the Campaign Board for the United States, supported by Cambridge in America staff. In addition to Board meetings and interim conference calls, CUDAR has also worked closely with each Board member on their individual engagement, to tailor their own personal impact on the campaign.

The Campaign Advisory Group, chaired by the Vice-Chancellor and comprising senior leadership from across the collegiate University, has continued its important work as internal advocates for the campaign and advisors on its strategic direction. In 2015–16 the Group has worked to develop a common understanding of philanthropy, to frame School needs and priorities for philanthropic involvement, and to further develop and articulate the University’s philanthropic needs for the campaign.

(iii) Organizational capability and systems

Recruitment has continued apace across all functional teams, including key senior roles in accordance with the agreed business plan. The Head of Alumni and Supporter Relations, the Head of Information Services and Change, and the Head of Finance took up post in the early part of 2016. In addition five fundraisers have also been recruited in the following areas: Papworth Hospital; School of Biological Sciences; School of Clinical Medicine; School of the Humanities and Social Sciences; and the Law Faculty. The Director of Development and the Head of HR and Talent Management have been appointed and will take up their posts in the 2016 Michaelmas Term.

A new fundraising and alumni relations system is scheduled to go live by December 2016, which will enable better information sharing between CUDAR, Cambridge in America, and the Colleges, and facilitate a more collaborative approach to development operations across the collegiate University. The focus of the last twelve months has been on establishing business processes and key functionality and reporting requirements through design workshops and interviews involving around thirty colleagues who represent the functional areas. Detailed work continues on data mapping, user training, report development, and data migration.

(iv) College collaboration

There has continued to be closer collaboration between the Colleges and CUDAR, both formally through the Joint Committee on Development and via informal interaction, across all development and alumni relations functions. Regular shared prospect meetings with all Colleges have continued throughout the year (with increased focus on joint fundraising strategy) supported by the shared interim information system, now used widely by all fundraising staff. The second annual joint advancement conference was held in May 2016 with over 180 attendees from the development community across collegiate Cambridge.

The following sections of this Report are submitted on behalf of the Council and the General Board.

University resources

(i) Financial position

The Council oversees planning and resource allocation matters through the Planning and Resources Committee (PRC), a joint Committee of the Council and the General Board. A significant proportion of the PRC’s work each year is the preparation of the University budget and five-year financial forecasts, which are reported in detail in the Report on the Financial Position of the University (the Budget Report). The forecasts for the coming five years show a small deficit on the Chest each year. The main factors driving the deterioration in the financial forecasts are reduced estimates of fee income and research grant overhead income. While the University is in a strong position to manage short-term deficits on the Chest, this position is unsustainable for the medium to long term.

Major financial risks continue to overshadow the planning period, most significantly the impact of the referendum result that called for the UK to leave the European Union. In addition, as noted in the General Board’s Report, this is a time of great change in the Higher Education legislative framework, and there is uncertainty as to how this will affect funding for teaching and research. On the cost side, local and national pressures on major items of expenditure including pay, pensions, energy, and construction costs are likely to continue for the foreseeable future. The PRC has issued guidance for the next Planning Round which allows for allocations to institutions to increase by no more than one per cent.

The Council reported in its last Annual Report that Chest-derived reserves held by Schools had begun to decline slowly after several years of growth. The accounts for 2015–16 showed that, in aggregate, such reserves had continued to fall. Understanding the reasons why Schools hold reserves, and striking a more appropriate balance between holding reserves and using them to make strategic investments in academic activity, remains a priority for the Planning Round.

(ii) The Capital Plan

The PRC is also responsible for managing the University’s capital planning, and for making allocations from the Capital Fund. The need for substantial investment in buildings remains, with major academic developments planned at the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, the New Museums site, the Old Addenbrooke’s site, and at West Cambridge – the last now including both the re-provision of the Department of Physics and the phased relocation of the Department of Engineering.

The ten-year (to 2024–25) cumulative cost of projects currently in the Green Zone (which have the highest level of approval that the PRC is able to give before authorization is given to proceed) is £678m, of which £260m is projected to be met from the Capital Fund, with the remainder being met from external sources. A further £150m has been allocated from Chest reserves to meet the costs of renewing the University’s bio-facilities. Substantial projects to which no allocation has yet been approved include those for Engineering and Physics. The Capital Fund must also be managed in such a way that the University is able to respond to opportunities which arise, e.g. through philanthropy or government initiatives. Accordingly, the PRC will continue to scrutinize closely the academic and business case for new buildings, and will continue to review all projects currently in the Green Zone to ensure that opportunities for securing external funding have been fully explored.

(iii) The cost of an undergraduate education at Cambridge

Through the PRC, the cost of providing an undergraduate education at Cambridge, using a model for understanding the University’s costs, is reviewed annually by a working group which includes student representation. The analysis is subsequently published.18

(iv) Sustainability metrics

To assist in longer term strategic planning, a set of sustainability metrics has been developed covering the full range of the University’s operations. These will allow the Council to track performance over time and make comparisons with peer institutions where comparable data are available. The metrics are consistent with the annual sustainability assurance report (ASSUR) to HEFCE and have been further developed in that context.

(v) Cambridge University Endowment Fund

The Cambridge University Endowment Fund closed its year with a value of £2,656 million as at 30 June 2016 (2015: £2,531m) with further investments from the Colleges, Trusts, and the University itself. The Investment Board meets four times a year to review investment performance and the portfolio’s risk profile, consider the Investment Office’s analysis and proposals, and advise on investment opportunities and the management of investments. The meetings cover a cycle of work giving particular attention to strategic asset allocation, annual review of manager performance, and focus on specific asset classes.

The CUEF’s investment return for the twelve months to 30 June 2016 was 6.3%. The Fund has returned an annualized 10.2% return over a rolling five-year period, which compares favourably to its principal benchmarks and its long term objective of a 5.25% return in real terms.

University employment

(i) Pay and reward

There has been significant work in the course of the year on the development of a ‘people strategy’.

Remaining provisions contained within the Joint Report of the Council and the General Board on amendments to the pay and grading scheme for non-clinical staff have been implemented, including conversion of remaining market supplements into Advanced Contribution Supplements or Market Pay with effect from 1 January 2016.

The 2016–17 pay settlement has not yet been agreed. The Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA) made a full and final offer at the last formal New JNCHES negotiating meeting on 28 April 2016. The base pay offer was for a 1.1% uplift on all points (save for the first 7 points of the pay spine where larger increases apply) and the removal of spine point 1.

Following the consultation exercise in 2015, the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) closed the final salary section with effect from 31 March 2016. As from 1 April 2016, all members are now accruing benefits on a career-revalued benefits basis. A defined-contribution section is due to be introduced on 1 October 2016.

A new nursery at North West Cambridge is scheduled to open in May 2017 and a tender for service provision is currently being prepared. Negotiations are taking place for the continued service provision at the existing University Nurseries at West Cambridge and Edwinstowe Close, both rated Outstanding by Ofsted, with the current provider, Childbase. Demand for nursery provision still outweighs availability of places and the Nursery Project Board is continuing to explore options.

(ii) Recruitment

Following the outcome of the EU referendum in June 2016, the government has not yet confirmed formally the future status of EU nationals living and working or studying in the UK. However, in the meantime UK ministers have confirmed that the current legal position of EU nationals in the UK remains unchanged and free movement rights still apply; this is likely to remain the case for some time. The HE sector is in a strong position to influence migration policy at the highest levels and will seek to safeguard the recruitment requirements of the sector under any new immigration system.

A project to move the personal paper files for all staff (both existing and future) on to an Electronic Document Management (EDM) system began in December 2015. It is expected the system will be completed by the end of 2016.

(iii) Equality initiatives

A thorough review of progress was undertaken to develop a new Equality and Diversity Strategy for 2016–21. This important exercise enabled the University to identify priority areas, beyond compliance, on which to maintain focus, namely a commitment to improving diversity at the most senior levels, benchmarking best practice, increasing awareness and training in key equality and diversity issues, advancing family-friendly practice, and ensuring an inclusive culture for staff and students. The Council expects to consider this strategy during Michaelmas Term 2016.

Steady progress in achieving Athena SWAN Awards has been made with all of the STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Medicine, and Mathematics) subjects. The expansion of SWAN into the Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Business, and Law disciplines has resulted in further engagement, with first submissions planned for later this year. An internal resource, the IDEAS project, has been developed to share good practice.

Amongst a number of high-level events held this year, a highlight was the Equality Pledge, a national event hosted by the University in November 2015, at which signatory organizations pledged to appreciate and value the benefits that different communities contribute to the University and the surrounding region.

(iv) Personal and Professional Development

PPD, in collaboration with Educational and Student Policy and under the direction of a Steering Committee chaired by the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education), made a major contribution to the development of the Cambridge Centre for Teaching and Learning. A Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education will be available from September 2016, which is open to staff who teach students at the University. The University’s first Teaching Forum was held in April 2016 and was well received.

A Researcher Development Framework has been established to improve the coherence of programme review and planning and has been adopted in most Schools and at University level.

Ongoing activities included the delivery of the Leadership Development Framework. A Senior Leadership Mentoring Initiative will be piloted in Michaelmas 2016. New online modules of the Leadership Essentials Initiative have been launched, and a new programme, Managing Successful Change, was piloted. Other projects included involvement in the Apprenticeship Levy project, work on the training requirements for meeting the Prevent duty, for roll-out during 2016–17, and a wide range of activities to support departments and Schools, including a new Train the Trainer programme, to be offered on the open programme next year.

(v) Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (OPdA)

The year 2015–16 has been a period of consolidation for OPdA, building on a number of initiatives undertaken during the previous two years. Highlights this year have included the opening of a second Postdoc Centre on the Biomedical Campus in August 2016 and preparation for the opening of a third on the North West Cambridge site in early 2017.

Good relations have continued to be strengthened with the PdOC Society and with other groups and departments across the collegiate University. Working within HR has afforded the advancement of representation on committees and working groups, a review of current salaries for research associates, and the early stages of better capture of destination data based on the Alumni Benefits scheme introduced in 2015 for postdocs. A review of postdoc engagement within the Colleges has been completed, with recommendations to enhance College affiliation and to develop a network of College postdoc conveners being implemented. OPdA has also continued to engage with other universities, primarily through Researchers14, a network of UK universities with an interest in sharing and developing good practice in support of early career researchers, which the OPdA was instrumental jointly with Imperial College in establishing in 2014.

OPdA has successfully piloted a mentoring scheme and a scheme for internships and placements for postdocs funded by one of the Research Councils. The Clinical School launched a parallel mentoring scheme aimed at mid-career researchers. The Entrepreneurial Postdocs of Cambridge (EPoC), launched in 2015 with the remit of creating awareness of entrepreneurial opportunities, ran its first postdoc business competition in December 2015 (with financial support from Cambridge Enterprise) and more recently arranged the first entrepreneurial event focused on social enterprise models. The University’s recognition of volunteering across Cambridge has led to the adoption and support of a Volunteers Committee within HR to ensure policy, practice, and recognition are managed in an appropriate and holistic manner.


21 November 2016

L. K. Borysiewicz, Vice-Chancellor

Margaret Glendenning

Rachel Padman

Chad Allen

David Good

Shirley Pearce

Ross Anderson

Nicholas Holmes

Michael Proctor

Richard Anthony

Alice Hutchings

John Shakeshaft

Jeremy Caddick

Umang Khandelwal

Susan Smith

R. Charles

Stuart Laing

Sara Weller

Anne Davis

Mark Lewisohn

I. H. White

Amatey Doku

Susan Oosthuizen

Annex A:
Council membership 2015–16

The Chancellor and the Vice-Chancellor

To 31 December 2016

To 31 December 2018

To 31 December 2020

Elected as Heads of Colleges

Prof. Michael Proctor, K

Prof. Ian Hugh White, JE

Mr Stuart Laing, CC

Prof. Susan Smith, G

Elected as Professors or Readers

Prof. Anne Davis, K

Prof. Fiona Eve Karet, DAR

Prof. Ross Anderson, CHU

Dr Susan Oosthuizen, W

Elected as members of the Regent House

The Reverend Jeremy Lloyd Caddick, EM

Dr Margaret Glendenning

Dr David Arthur Good, K

Dr Rachael Padman, N

Dr Richard Anthony, ED

Dr Ruth Charles, N

Dr Nicholas Holmes, T

Dr Alice Hutchings

External members

Prof. Dame Shirley Pearce

Ms Sara Weller

Mr Mark Lewisohn, CHR

Mr John Shakeshaft, T

Prof. Dame Shirley Pearce

Ms Sara Weller

Student members (to 30 June 2016)

Student members (from 1 July 2016)

Mr Chad Allen, K

Ms Priscilla Mensah, G

Mr Cornelius Roemer, T

Mr Chad Allen, K

Mr Amatey Doku, JE

Ms Umang Khandelwal, N

Secretary: The Registrary

Annex B:
Statement of Primary Responsibilities

The Council has adopted this Statement of Primary Responsibilities.

The principal responsibilities of the Council are defined by University Statute A IV 1 which reads:

(a) The Council shall be the principal executive and policy-making body of the University. The Council shall have general responsibility for the administration of the University, for the planning of its work, and for the management of its resources; it shall have power to take such action as is necessary for it to discharge these responsibilities. It shall also perform such other executive and administrative duties as may be delegated to it by the Regent House or assigned to it by Statute or Ordinance.

(b) The Council shall have the right of reporting to the University. It shall advise the Regent House on matters of general concern to the University.

(c) The Council shall make an Annual Report to the University, and shall initiate and submit a Grace for the approval of the Report by the Regent House.

(d) The Council shall have the power of submitting Graces to the Regent House and to the Senate. The procedure for the submission of Graces shall be prescribed by Special Ordinance.

(e) The Council shall oversee the work of all those institutions in the University which are placed under its supervision, and shall ensure that the University officers assigned to those institutions are satisfactorily performing the duties and fulfilling the conditions of tenure of their offices.

Moreover, the Council shall perform such duties in connection with financial matters as are assigned to it by Statute F I.

Pursuant to these responsibilities the Council:

through its Finance Committee, its Audit Committee, and the Planning and Resources Committee, ensures the University’s accountability for the proper use of public funds;

supervises the financial position of the University through its statutory Finance Committee;

oversees the investment management of the Cambridge University Endowment Fund through its Investment Board;

arranges audit through its statutory Audit Committee;

conducts legal business and ethical scrutiny, especially in respect of the acceptance of benefactions and investment responsibility, through its Advisory Committee on Benefactions and External and Legal Affairs;

discharges its responsibilities in relation to the University as an employer through the Human Resources Committee (HRC), a joint Committee with the General Board;

develops University policy on the advice of the General Board and that of specialist advisory bodies;

conducts planning and resource allocation through the Planning and Resources Committee (PRC) and the Resource Management Committee (RMC), both joint Committees with the General Board;

deals with business about buildings and the University estate with the advice of the Buildings Committee (a joint Committee which reports through the PRC), and on the advice of the Finance Committee;

informs and advises the Regent House through Reports, Notices, and Graces, and through considering remarks made at Discussions;

conducts the University’s relations with Government, HEFCE, other national bodies, and local and regional bodies, responding on behalf of the University to consultations and other matters as required under UK legislation;

supports and advises the Vice-Chancellor and, either through him or her or directly, the Pro-Vice-Chancellors;

supervises University institutions placed under its supervision, particularly through receiving reports, and also through the PRC and the HRC;

through the Finance Committee exercises financial and some other supervision of Cambridge University Press, the Local Examinations Syndicate (Cambridge Assessment), University-owned companies, and some free-standing bodies such as the Cambridge scholarship trusts;

pursuant to Act of Parliament, discharges responsibilities for the University Student Unions through its Council Committee for the Supervision of the Student Unions;

makes (or recommends) senior appointments (including the Vice-Chancellor, Pro-Vice-Chancellors, the Registrary and, through its Standing Appointments Committee established by Ordinance, Directors and other senior staff in the Unified Administrative Service);

monitors risk management, emergency management, and value for money surveillance;

monitors the implementation of major projects, through special groups and the Information Services Committee, and the West and North West Cambridge Estates Board;

through the work of the Information Services Committee, monitors the provision of IT infrastructure and support;

keeps University governance and similar matters under review;

makes a statutory annual report to the University;

monitors its own performance and effectiveness.

The Council has published the following statement (Statutes and Ordinances, p. 110):

Notice by the Council

Statement of intention

In carrying out their functions as the principal executive and policy-making body of the University the Council will consult the Regent House on questions of policy which in the Council’s judgement are likely to prove controversial. They will do this by submitting a Grace to the Regent House for the approval of a provisional decision or statement of intention; where appropriate, such a Grace will allow for the expression of a preference between alternative options. The Council will give consideration to remarks made at any Discussion of such matters and to the outcome of any vote on them.