Welcome to the Senior Common Room of Requirement. You find yourself in a discreet space with a view over rolling lawns from large period windows, and a roaring log fire, with the College dog asleep in front of it. A number of comfortable Chesterfields and wing-backed armchairs are thoughtfully positioned around antique occasional tables. A selection of reading matter is on the medieval chest near the entrance, including New Statesman, Economist, New Scientist, Nature, Prospect, THES, every conceivable daily paper, Spare Rib and the Socialist Worker. Peters, the College butler (sponsored by a successful alumnus with a top domestic employment agency, so at no cost to the public purse) is on hand to fulfil all necessary demands. This is the place for MNetters of academic leanings, and post docs and student parents are welcome to knock on the door should they require academic or pastoral advice. Sit back, quaff your sherry, Fair Trade coffee or even a smoothie made from fruit grown in the College grounds, and enjoy.
Now a question. In your institutions, is the period from 1 November 2007 to 31 December 2007 being counted as an interregnum for the purposes of the RAE/REF, with only publications from 1 January 2008 being counted for the next one? I ask because this is the case in my institution, and I can't believe for a minute that this was Gvt guidance.
Well back from town now, where I was buying bits and bobs for DS1. In John Lewis I bumped into another academic, one of my research heroes and someone I really admire. So what did I do? I started babbling like a moron. "Hello," I said, "it's me, we met recently at xx".
Blank look. Finally came the polite reply, "Oh yes, of course".
I continued in an equally Mr Bean-ish manner. "I have four children, you know. This is one of them."
WTF? I mean, it's like announcing, "I'm 93 you know," or as my mother does when she runs out of conversational opening gambits, "I'm German you know."
So much for sounding cool and intellectually incisive.
I think we're all too knackered to chat but more than happy to settle into the old burgundy velvet armchair by the log fire and put my feet up on the dog. Cheers . That's me for the evening. Do carry on... ...
can I draw up a chair? and look mildly bemused and befuddled as you trade acronyms (I'm overseas, you see - well, only over one small sea, but still). We don't have RIF or RAF, but we do have KPIs and FEC and the now outlawed CLIT (something and legal and information and technology course: it almost got all the way onto the books before anyone noticed ) and RAM and...well, wanders over to drinks cabinet muttering.
In humanities, in Ireland (catastrophic economic meltdown, lost 30% of salary in the last calendar year, piles of pressure coming down the line...different miseries, but miseries none the less) - terrible staff student ratio, very poor admin support (a 1/3 of the number say that Warwick would have, with a student body which is slightly smaller), so although I am now fairly senior (though don't look it, I like to flatter myself) I still do an awful lot of tasks that are basically clerical...
Like many of you, I am finding it hard to balance motherhood and career (DD is 2), particularly the research part.
<<pokes head around the door>>> psst, I've posted a message over on Off the Beaten Track about my research, work and sabbatical options. I fear it's very long and a bit boring, but if anyone feels like hopping over there and giving me their opinions, I'd be very grateful....
Sabbatical - wow, lucky you, and options - that's something I dream about ;o)
My academic life is more like yours DMC (lots of admin, cr*p pay, silly contact hours and virtually no time for research, certainly no money for conference etc). I combine work with being a single mum (eldest just started Uni, youngest doing GCSE's soon) so have no life!
My Uni is looking for 7% in staff cuts (around 50 people in total - doubtless not in senior management though!) - nightmare times for most of us I guess, but espcially those of us in the Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences, and those of us at little Unis ;o(