University Strategy 2017-2027
Foreword from the Vice-Chancellor
Durham is one of the world’s great universities and one of the most distinctive.
Our future is bright. We attract wonderful students from all around the world and we are ready to embrace change.
We built our new University Strategy over the course of 18 months. Vice-Chancellor Ray Hudson began the process and I was privileged to complete it, working with a dedicated team of academics and members of the professional services, as well as students.
Our approach to Strategy building was distinctive in three main ways.
First, we have not been content to state that we will build a stronger faculty, improve our estate, enhance our education offer or make our professional services more efficient. We agreed that we would always link an objective to an action.
Second, the Strategy was developed with a view to engaging the Durham University community as fully as possible. Our governing bodies, Senate and Council, saw all the chapters as Green and White papers and the wider University community had access to an interactive Strategy website. Consultation outside the University has focused on our Estate Masterplan but nothing has been held back.
Third, the development of the Strategy did not constrain the University from taking some major decisions during its period of gestation. To the contrary: the University community agreed during the course of 2016 to endorse a set of policy proposals that will fundamentally change the size, shape and mission of the University.
The Strategy starts by declaring that Durham is so much more than a leading research-intensive university. We are a collegiate university, an historic university, a university that values the wider student experience as much as we value education and research.
We then show how we will build on success to shape our future. We have identified some key areas for improvement. And we have proposed actions to put the University on a firm footing as we move forward. Some of these actions involve radical change, as you will see.
Thereafter, the Strategy describes how we will build on our strengths to do so much more in research, education and the wider student experience. We believe strongly that the best is still to come.
We will work hard to globalise Durham and to make it a more significant player in our region, the UK and beyond. And we will do so most of all by investing in our core asset: our people.
The Strategy concludes with our Estate Masterplan and chapters on alumni relations, our future funding, our characteristics and values and how we will measure our performance.
Along the way, you will meet some of our academics, professional service staff and students and see some of our buildings, new and old. You will also meet some of our members for life, our alumni.
I hope you find the University Strategy 2017-2027 informative. I also hope you enjoy reading it.
Professor Stuart Corbridge
Vice-Chancellor and Warden