University Executive Group - Named Chairs

Updated on 30 August 2016

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1. Named chairs are held in especial high regard as prestigious and senior chairs within the University. The University considers that only the most eminent professors in their field should hold them.

2. Named chairs must not become attributes of particular positions within the University. For example, the Dean of x should not be awarded a named chair by virtue of being appointed Dean of x. However, a holder of a named chair who becomes a Dean, for example, retains the named chair.


3. (a) The University Executive Group (UEG) shall consider all proposals for the establishment of new named chairs or for the renaming of existing established chairs and shall make a recommendation to the Senate.

(b) It is normal practice that chairs may be named after individuals or organisations prominent in some way in the life or history of the University or who have made major donations to the University or who have contributed to the reputation or standing of the University.

(c) The University shall maintain a schedule of named chairs and the Schools responsible for them.


4. In the event that a named chair should fall vacant, the Dean may make representation to the Vice-Principal (Academic Planning & Performance (APP)) for consideration by the UEG, proposing:

Either: (a) open recruitment to the named chair;

Or: (b) the translation of the named chair to an existing member of staff holding a personal or other established chair.

A School may decide to do neither and leave the chair vacant until such time as the post becomes affordable or there is an existing member of staff worthy of translation to the named chair.
5. In the case of 4 (a) above, the recruitment shall include internal as well as external applicants. In considering whether there should be open recruitment the School and the UEG will have due regard to financial sustainability.

6. (a) In the case of 4 (b) above, the UEG shall appoint a panel comprising the Principal, a Vice- Principal (normally the Vice-Principal (APP)), the Director of Human Resources & Organisational Development and a senior professor from outside the School in which the named chair is normally held. The panel shall have authority, where it is desirable, to seek comment on the application from senior academics within the discipline from other institutions.

(b) The panel shall consider the proposal from the School, which shall comprise a written case prepared by the Dean or other senior academic within the School alongside a full CV of the academic in question. The panel shall make a recommendation to the UEG.

(c) The UEG shall consider the recommendation and, if so minded to approve it, shall seek formal agreement from the Senate at its next meeting.

University Executive Group August 2016

Name Foundation School responsible
Bell Chair of Education 1876 Education and Social Work
Baxter Chair in Chemistry 1881 Life Sciences
Baxter Chair of Mathematics 1881 Science and Engineering
Boyd Baxter Chair of Biology (Biological Sciences) 1884 Life Sciences
Cox Chair in Anatomy 1887 Science and Engineering
Symers Chair in Physiology 1889 Medicine
Harris Chair 1895 Science and Engineering
Boyd Chair of Dental Surgery 1937 Dentistry
Watson-Watt Chair 1947 Science and Engineering
James Mackenzie Chair of Public Health 1950 Medicine
James Mackenzie Chair of Child Health 1950 Medicine
Bonar Chair of Modern History 1954 Humanities
Bonar Chair of Applied Economics 1954 Social Sciences
Roscoe Chair in Chemistry 1964 Life Sciences
Carnegie Chair 1964 Science and Engineering
Ivory Chair of Applied Mathematics 1964 Science and Engineering
Mathew Chair of Accountancy 1986 Social Sciences
Robert Fleming Chair in Finance and Investment 1987 Social Sciences
Pat McPherson Chair of Cancer Biology 2009 Medicine
Regius Chair of Life Sciences 2013 Life Sciences


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