June 02, 2007

Union officials investigate bullying at business school - Wales, UK

The extent of bullying at a Welsh university is being investigated by union officials. The University and College Union has issued questionnaires to all its members in the University of Glamorgan Business School.

UCU secretary for Wales Margaret Phelan said she and other officials would be meeting the university’s vice-chancellor Professor David Halton later this month to discuss the issue.

“We have sent out a questionnaire. It asks a number of questions about the business school including bullying,” Ms Phelan confirmed. “We are meeting with the vice-chancellor and can’t say anything more until then.’’

Gwyn Smith, UCU branch secretary for the university and a senior lecturer in the business school, said around half of the school’s 100-plus staff were union members. “Questionnaires have gone out from our regional office. It was a single issue about bullying and to see the extent of the problem,” he said.

Mr Smith was also unable to give more details until discussions with management had been held. Glamorgan Business School is the largest business school in Wales and is highly regarded across the UK.
It has worked with companies including Hyder, Bosch, British Airways and London Underground.

The questionnaires sent out by the UCU follow a formal investigation into allegations of bullying, sexual and racial harassment and serious financial irregularities at the business school in 2003. Those allegations were made by an anonymous whistle-blower and were investigated by retired Exeter University academic, Professor Edward Abel.

Peter Crofts, head of marketing and student recruitment, said there had been no allegations of bullying at the business school in the past 12 months. He said, “The university is carrying out its own staff survey in a couple of months so we are disappointed that the UCU is carrying out its own niche survey.”

From: http://icwales.icnetwork.co.uk
Applause. Braaaavvooooooo. Yeah! Even more interesting that a retired professor was given the task and seems to have discovered something. So why is it that this particular university gets union interest and not others? Are there no union members in other universities? Yes, OK, we are a bit cynical. If the union wants to be taken seriously, then it should follow up on the above and expand the investigations into abuses occuring in other universities. If UCU wants some credibility, then it should follow up and not make this an isolated case. How bad does something have to get before they take notice?


Anonymous said...

"we are disappointed that the UCU is carrying out its own niche survey"

May I swear here? What an arrogant, dismissive and egotistical individual head of marketing Peter Crofts must be. Translation at youswear.com

Anonymous said...

The allegations were out in 2003. The UCU local branch decided to act now June 2007. What prompted them to do nothing until recently?

I think this weblog is becoming effective and powerful.

Anonymous said...

AT LAST.......

UCU have made a start in exploring workplace bullying.

They must now CONTINUE.........

........workplace bullying is rife in our universities (Boynton 2005) and there has not been any other research to challenge Boynton's findings that I know of.

.....so UCU there is much work to be done.

Aphra Behn

Anonymous said...

Re: anonymous 9:50

Why is Peter Crofts disappointed?!

Anonymous said...

...a publicity stunt...tell us what the local UCU did in 2003 when they become aware of the allegations...the kind of support they provided to members

Anonymous said...

Sally - IS this just a little publicity stunt?

Why are your members so cynical about these current actions of UCU?

Peter Mackney's 'bold message' to UCU is reported in Friday's TES 1/6/07....

He suggests that:

we hold its leaders to account - I presume he means you Sally?;

you don't get what you deserve; you get what you fight for - that's us and you Sally or we and you Sally?;

it will take the high road to justice - good!;

it will champion the causes of the excluded(he doesn't say except those who believe they are targets of bullying)

...the remit is wide...Israel, Palestine, Islamophobia, trade unionists in Columbia who are persecuted...the campaigns are impressive.....

....he ends his speech with a little joke about prescriptive grammarians....

...he will know then that descriptive grammarians do not make evaluative judgements about language and its standing in society...

...whose side was he on?

Aphra Behn

Anonymous said...

we know that the local ucu at Glamorgan are compromised...stop the act.

Anonymous said...

"...Glamorgan Business School is the largest business school in Wales and is highly regarded across the UK..."

how could you say that? who provided you with this information?

Glamorgan University is nothing but a business venture.