Skip to main contentCambridge University Reporter

No 6584

Wednesday 27 May 2020

Vol cl No 26

pp. 448–450



  1 June, Monday. End of third quarter of Easter Term.

  9 June, Tuesday. Discussion deadline, receipt of written submissions by 4 p.m. (see below).

12 June, Friday. Full Term ends.

18 June, Thursday. Easter Term ends.

24 June, Wednesday. Publication of an extraordinary issue of the Reporter, including Reports for Discussion on 7 July (see p. 450).

  7 July, Tuesday. Discussion deadline, receipt of written submissions by 4 p.m.

29 July, Wednesday. Publication of an extraordinary issue of the Reporter, including any Graces for submission to the Regent House.

Discussion on Tuesday, 9 June 2020

The Vice-Chancellor invites those qualified under the regulations for Discussions (Statutes and Ordinances, p. 105) to submit remarks on the following Reports by 4 p.m. on Tuesday, 9 June 2020:

1.Joint Report of the Council and the General Board, dated 18 March 2020, on the titles and structure of academic offices (Reporter, 6582, 2019–20, p. 419).

2.Report of the Council, dated 16 March 2020, on updates to the University’s freedom of speech documentation (Reporter, 6582, 2019–20, p. 425).

3.Report of the General Board, dated 17 March 2020, on a University Senior Lecturer dual career pathway (Reporter, 6582, 2019–20, p. 428).

Discussions in the Senate-House have been suspended in response to government advice (Reporter, 6582, 2019–20, p. 415). The Council has agreed that remarks will instead be accepted for publication as written submissions until further notice (see below). Submissions, which should comply with the usual rules for Discussion remarks (Statutes and Ordinances, pp. 105 and 110), should be emailed to by the 4 p.m. deadline above to be eligible for inclusion in the Discussion Report. General information on Discussions is provided at

Temporary governance arrangements: Coronavirus (COVID-19) update

26 May 2020

As the University marks ten weeks of closure, there has been a change of focus in the University’s response to the coronavirus outbreak. Planning has now progressed from a period of activity centred on business-critical matters to one with an emphasis on preparation for recovery. In response to that change of emphasis and the evolving government advice, the Council has updated the temporary governance arrangements described in its Notice of 9 April 2020 (Reporter, 6583, 2019–20, p. 435).

Committee business

During the recovery phase, committee work has resumed but priority is being given to the discussion of business- and time-critical matters. Those matters include the review of plans for the return to fuller on-site activity, reflections on lessons learnt, and exploration of opportunities for the University’s future in the light of these lessons, its financial situation, and the changed global context. In order to make space for these discussions, committees have been advised to defer items that require discussion but are not urgent and to receive straightforward items by circular.

A number of those business- and time‑critical items require the approval of the Regent House by Grace, some after the publication of a Report and a Discussion. The Council and the General Board will be reviewing those matters in the coming weeks, to ensure that only those requiring approval before 1 October 2020 are put forward. The Notice below provides a timetable for their approval (p. 450).

Adjustments to governance processes

The government is still advising the public to maintain social distancing. Public gatherings are not permitted and the guidance encourages people to limit meetings with others beyond the members of their household. In response, the Council has agreed to some adjustments to the University’s normal governance processes.

Discussions in the Senate-House will not be possible, but members of the University must still be able to comment on the proposals put forward in Reports. Until further notice, members of the University will be invited to submit their remarks on Reports by email to by 4 p.m. on the date given for the Discussion of those Reports. Those remarks will then be published in the next issue of the Reporter as usual.

For members of the Regent House, participation in University governance often relies on providing a signature to indicate support (for example, to request a ballot on a Grace). The Council recognises that the collection and submission of signatures is likely to be difficult in the current circumstances. A project is underway to enable members of the Regent House to attach their digital signatures to any University governance petition1 using their CRSid and Raven password.

The Registrary will continue to accept handwritten signatures on petitions, received as scans or photographs and submitted by email to (but not those delivered to the Old Schools, as those buildings remain closed). However, members of the Regent House will be encouraged to use the petitions website, once it is available to use from the end of July 2020.

Publication of the Reporter and the Statutes and Ordinances

Until further notice, the Reporter will carry only governance business and will be published as required; there will therefore be issues published on 24 June and 29 July 2020, and in mid July to provide the report of the Discussion on 7 July 2020, in line with the timetable in the Notice below. If it becomes necessary to publish a stand-alone Notice on governance business in between issues, it will be published on the Advance Notices section of the Reporter website, and an email sent out to those on the Reporter distribution list to draw attention to it. The Council expects to publish a Notice in mid June 2020 about the decisions made under delegated authority.2 It also expects publication of the Reporter to return to its weekly schedule from the beginning of Michaelmas Term 2020.

The Statutes and Ordinances will be published in PDF format in October 2020, covering changes approved in the period from 1 October 2019 to 16 April 2020. An updated version will be published in January 2021, covering changes approved in the period from 17 April 2020 to 30 September 2020.

Review of arrangements

The Council will continue to monitor the appropriateness of the temporary arrangements for Discussions and the Reporter. It will also keep under review the effectiveness of the petitions website once launched.


  • 1This includes requests for ballots on or amendments to Graces, Graces initiated by members of the Regent House (‘50‑member’ Graces), requests for topics of concern, and fly‑sheets. Separate arrangements are being made for the signature of student fly‑sheets.

  • 2See the Council’s Notice of 9 April 2020 (Reporter, 6583, 2019–20, p. 435).

Timetable for the approval of Graces before Michaelmas Term 2020

26 May 2020

The Council has agreed the following timetable for the approval of business- and time‑critical proposals by the Regent House before 1 October 2020. For matters falling into that category, the timetable gives a cut-off date of 24 June 2020 for the publication of Reports, and delays the publication of Graces until 29 July 2020. This delay will provide time for the development of the petitions website (see p. 449). Voting will take place later than usual, but the Council hopes that by publishing the timetable now, members of the collegiate University will have sufficient notice to plan around these dates.1

If a Grace is published after 29 July 2020 (including those relating to Reports published after 24 June 2020) and there is a request for a ballot on that Grace, the ballot will be held in Michaelmas Term 2020.

Wednesday, 24 June 2020

Latest date by which most Reports will be published

4 p.m. on Tuesday, 7 July 2020

Deadline for the receipt of Discussion remarks as written submissions

Wednesday, 29 July 2020

Graces published, together with any responses to Discussion remarks (if not already published)

4 p.m. on Friday, 7 August 2020

Deadline for a request for a ballot on or an amendment to a published Grace

4 p.m. on Monday, 10 August 2020

Notice of any request for a ballot posted in the Advance Notices section of the Reporter website and an email sent to the Reporter distribution list

1 p.m. on Tuesday, 18 August 2020

Deadline for fly‑sheets and for amendments following receipt of a request for a ballot

10 a.m. on Friday, 28 August 2020

Voting opens

5 p.m. on Thursday, 10 September 2020

Voting closes / last day for receipt of voting papers

Friday, 11 September 2020

Results published in the Advance Notices section of the Reporter website and an email sent to the Reporter distribution list


  • 1The Council and the General Board have already announced that there will be a ballot on the recommendations of the Joint Report of the Council and the General Board on the titles and structure of academic offices (Reporter, 6582, 2019–20, p. 419). The Joint Report is included in the Discussion list for 9 June 2020 (see p. 449).

E. M. C. RAMPTON, Registrary