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About the University Executive Board

06 September 2012

University Executive Board

What does University Executive Board do?

The University Executive Board (UEB) will assist me as the Vice-Chancellor in performing my duties as the university’s chief executive officer. This will involve developing and implementing strategy, operational plans, policies, procedures and setting budgets to drive the University towards its vision of being a recognised Top 100 university internationally and a Top 20 university in the UK.

It will also monitor the operating and financial performance of the University, so that we can respond to external pressures across the University’s academic areas. 

How often does UEB meet?

It will meet every week on Monday mornings.

What types of topics will be discussed?

UEB will discuss the full range of issues affecting the University, covering strategic and operational management, governance, and academic matters.

What are the Board’s current priorities?

The immediate priorities of the Board will cover:

  1. Embedding the new College structures;
  2. Refreshing the University’s strategy and priorities with a focus on research excellence, student experience, internationalisation and engagement with Wales; and
  3. Developing a new budgeting process for the University to fit with the new Colleges and the reformed Professional Services.

How can I get an item on the University Executive Board agenda?

Contact Rhys Thomas, Head of the Vice-Chancellor’s Office.  Rhys is the secretary to University Executive Board.

UEB has a lot of ground to cover, and it may be that some work is necessary before the issue is able to be considered effectively by UEB.  A conversation with Rhys will help shape that process and ensure that we are able to deal with important issues in the right order. Any item for UEB to consider will need to be sponsored by a UEB member.

How are decisions made by University Executive Board?

Decisions will be reached collectively by the members of UEB. 

UEB includes the Pro Vice-Chancellors for the Colleges and the Chief Operating Officer, who between them line manage all areas of the University, as well as other senior staff; the Deputy-Vice-Chancellor, the thematic Pro-Vice-Chancellors, and the Directors of Finance and Human resources, who have specific remits. 

This structure works well at many other universities, and ensures we have the capacity to take decisions, to take them quickly if needs be, and to be informed by the whole range of activities that the University is undertaking and the needs of those who are delivering them. 

Are their decisions final?

The decisions taken by the UEB will fall into two main categories.  The first is one of executive decision-making.  The UEB, and I as Vice-Chancellor, have the responsibility, with delegated authority from Council, to manage the University on a day-to-day basis.  These decisions will be final.

The second category is decisions, or more accurately, recommendations made by UEB to Council, its sub-committees, and Senate.  Here UEB will recommend a course of action to Council and/or Senate.  The ultimate decision will lie with those bodies.

Can anyone attend the University Executive Board meetings?

No.  Staff will be invited to present specific papers to UEB as and when required. 

There will, however, be a regular updates on matters that come before UEB. These will take three main forms:

  1. A communications meeting every other week (as a general rule) where I and fellow members of the UEB will speak to a wider range of senior staff (Heads of Schools, Heads of Administrative Divisions) across the University about current developments. Those attending will be able to ask questions and express any concerns. I would hope that some of the key messages will be passed back to staff within schools and the professional services.
  2. A regular newsletter, summarising the key points discussed and decisions reached by UEB will be available to any staff who are interested; and
  3. A monthly news e-mail from me to all staff.

And of course individual members of UEB will be actively engaging with colleagues across the University to help put the University’s strategic ambitions into practice.


Meet University Executive Board

Professor Colin Riordan, President and Vice-Chancellor

Professor Colin Riordan took up the post of President and Vice-Chancellor at Cardiff University 1st September 2012. Previously he was Vice-Chancellor of the University of Essex appointed in October 2007. He moved to Essex from Newcastle University, where he had been Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Provost of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences since August 2005. Before joining Newcastle University, he taught at the then University of Wales, Swansea, and Julius-Maximilians Universität-Würzburg in Germany.

Professor Elizabeth Treasure, Deputy Vice-Chancellor

Professor Elizabeth Treasure is Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff University, as well as an active researcher, teacher and clinician. Professor Treasure was Dean and Head of the School of Dentistry between 2006 and 2010. Professor Treasure’s research interests centre on clinical effectiveness, epidemiology and clinical trials. She has been a principal investigator in the last two Adult Dental Health Surveys, has chaired a review of the dental workforce in Wales and acted as scientific advisor to the Department of Health’s dental division.

Professor George Boyne, Pro Vice-Chancellor, College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Professor George Boyne is responsible for the overall management and leadership of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences. The College consists of 11 Schools: Cardiff Business School; Cardiff School of Planning and Geography; Cardiff School of English, Communication and Philosophy; Cardiff School of European Languages, Translation and Politics; Cardiff School of History, Archaeology and Religion; Cardiff School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies; Cardiff Law School; Cardiff Centre for Lifelong Learning; School of Music; Cardiff School of Social Sciences; School of Welsh. Professor Boyne plays a key role in setting the strategy and direction of the College and in promoting the development of learning and teaching and research excellence. A Professor of Public Sector Management, Professor Boyne’s main research interest is the explanation and evaluation of organizational performance in the public sector.

Professor Karen Holford, Pro Vice-Chancellor, College of Physical Sciences

Professor Karen Holford is Pro Vice-Chancellor, College of Physical Sciences and is responsible for the overall management and leadership of the College. The College consists of seven Schools:  the Welsh School of Architecture; Cardiff School of Chemistry; Cardiff School of Computer Science and Informatics; School of Earth and Ocean Sciences; Cardiff School of Engineering; Cardiff School of Mathematics; School of Physics and Astronomy. Professor Holford plays a key role in setting the strategy and direction of the College and in promoting the development of learning and teaching and research excellence.  As Pro Vice-Chancellor, Professor Holford is also a member of the University Executive Board. Professor Holford is a Chartered Engineer (Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers), a Chartered Physicist (Fellow of the Institute of Physics) and Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales. She joined the University’s School of Engineering as a lecturer in 1990, becoming its first female director in 2010.

Professor Dylan Jones, Pro Vice-Chancellor, College of Biomedical and Life Sciences

Professor Dylan Jones is responsible for the College of Biomedical and Life Sciences. The College consists of nine Schools: School of Biosciences; School of Dentistry; School of Healthcare Studies; School of Medicine; Cardiff School of Nursing and Midwifery Studies; School of Optometry and Vision Sciences; Cardiff School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences; Wales Deanery / School of Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education; School of Psychology. Professor Jones plays a key role in setting the strategy and direction of the College and in promoting the development of learning and teaching and research excellence. Formerly Head of the School of Psychology, Professor Jones played a leading role in establishing the School as one of the largest and best in the UK, including during its expansion establishing Cardiff University Brain Imaging Centre (CUBRIC) and drawing funds for Wales Autism Research Centre (WARC). 

Professor Chris McGuigan, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Research, Innovation and Enterprise

Professor Chris McGuigan is Pro Vice-Chancellor, Research, Innovation & Enterprise and is responsible for the University’s research activity, innovation, including commercialisation and the broader economic impact of the University.  His specific responsibilities include the development of the University’s research, innovation, and enterprise strategy and its implementation and monitoring; oversight of cross-University Research Institutes; and preparations for the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014. Professor Chris McGuigan’s major research interest is in new drug discovery and development for HIV, hepatitis C, herpes, influenza, cancer and osteoarthritis. He is the inventor of three novel drug candidates now in clinical trial, FV-100 for shingles, INX-189   for hepatitis C and NUC-1031 for pancreatic cancer.

Professor Patricia Price, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Student Experience and Academic Standards

Professor Patricia Price is Pro Vice-Chancellor, Student Experience & Academic Standards. She is responsible for the University’s programmes of study, its academic standards and the quality of the student experience. Her specific responsibilities include oversight of the development of the University’s education strategy, its implementation and monitoring; the quality of the student experience at Cardiff; oversight of the University Graduate College and the University’s widening access activities. Her research focuses on patients with chronic non-healing wounds - particularly in patients with diabetic foot ulcers and sequelae of burn injuries: her work includes the measurement of patient experiences of living with wounds, patient awareness of risk, patient experience of care, and non-medical outcome measures including health economics, health-related quality of life and methods of evaluating care.  During her time at Cardiff, Professor Price has been Director of the University’s Wound Healing Research Unit (2002-2006) and Dean and Head of the University’s School of Healthcare Studies (2010- date).

Professor Hywel Thomas, Pro Vice-Chancellor, International and Engagement

Professor Hywel Thomas is responsible for the University’s international activities, partnerships and reputation, and the University’s engagement within Wales. His specific responsibilities include oversight of the development of the University’s internationalisation strategy and its implementation and monitoring; international collaboration in research including transnational research funding opportunities; transnational research programmes; and joint research facilities and institutes involving international collaboration; and the University’s participation in international associations. Professor Thomas is Professor of Civil Engineering and Founder Director of the Geoenvironmental Research Centre (GRC) at the School of Engineering. In 2012, Professor Thomas was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society for his breakthroughs on geo-environmental engineering processes.

Professor Terry Threadgold, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Staff & Diversity

Terry Threadgold is Professor of Communication and Cultural Studies, and Pro Vice-Chancellor for Staff and Diversity. She joined the University in 1999 as a Research Professor, later holding the position of Head of the Cardiff School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies between 2003 and 2007. Professor Threadgold’s funded Australian research included work on women and ageing, and on risk, communication and injecting drug use. Both projects had a strong media element. Her book, Feminist Poetics: Poeisis, Performance, Histories, a study of race, nation and identity in Australia, remains a key text in the field of feminist cultural studies and critical discourse analysis.

Hugh Jones, Chief Operating Officer

Hugh Jones is Chief Operating Officer of the University, in which post he has responsibility for all aspects of the University’s professional and support services. He joined the University in April 2012. Hugh’s brief at Cardiff is to ensure that the professional and support teams within Schools and in cross-university support departments deliver high-quality, effective and efficient support to the University’s academic work. He is line manager of the Directors of the central teams.

Mike Davies, Director of Physical & Financial Resources

Mike Davies joined Cardiff University in 1987 prior to the merger of University College Cardiff and UWIST. He is a qualified CIPFA accountant and has previously worked within South Glamorgan County Council. Mr Davies was appointed Director of Finance in 1994 and took on the role of Director of Finance and Estates at Cardiff University in 2000.

Jayne Dowden, Director of the Human Resources, Safety, Health & Environment

Jayne Dowden is Director of the Human Resources, Safety, Health & Environment Directorate for Cardiff University; a brief which encompasses a wide range of matters related to people working and studying at the University. These include recruitment, employment advice, training and development, health, safety and a positive working environment.

In a future edition of Blas the Pro Vice-Chancellors will explain more about their plans and priorities for their portfolios of responsibility.