Russell Group statement following outcome of UCU ballot
29 February 2008
Director General of The Russell Group, Dr Wendy Piatt, said: “Members of The Russell Group of Universities operate professional employment policies and practices including modern, competitive and fair pay and reward systems to ensure we can attract and retain the most talented staff in a global market. We aspire to work closely with the trade unions to recognise and reward excellence.
“Members of The Russell Group are disappointed that the UCU has taken a step back from national pay bargaining. Furthermore, we are disappointed that the outcome of the UCU ballot has reversed the position agreed by all parties at the end of the most recent negotiations. We would ask UCU to consider carefully how it chooses to proceed – particularly as such a low proportion of HE staff participated in the ballot. We still hope that it will be possible for UCU to agree the necessary improvements to the national negotiating machinery in line with what has already been agreed with the other unions. It is important that we work in partnership through a modern and professional negotiating process and, therefore, we continue to support UCEA fully in requiring single table negotiations with all unions represented and an agreed timetable for pay negotiations including a dispute resolution procedure.”
The purpose of the Russell Group is to provide thought leadership and strategic direction for 20 major research intensive universities of the UK; we aim to ensure that policy development in a wide range of issues relating to higher education is underpinned by a robust evidence base and a commitment to civic responsibility, improving life chances, raising aspirations and contributing to economic prosperity and innovation.