University barely scratched by HE cuts

Despite fears of cuts, the University of Lincoln is set to receive a 0.2% rise in funding, it has been revealed on Thursday, March 18th, by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE).

HEFCE announced the amount of funding grants the universities across the country will receive for next year, with many educational institutions receiving harsh slashes in funds, some facing cuts of up to 14%.

The HEFCE is responsible for allocating funding to universities, and this is the first time since 1997 when Labour came into power that they have made cuts.

The University of Lincoln is one of the 25 fortunate universities that avoided grant cuts for the coming academic year, though the small increase is “still below inflation”, according to Scott Davidson, the Pro Vice Chancellor for External Affairs.

Professor Scott Davidson, the Pro Vice Chancellor for External Affairs at the University of Lincoln. Photo: ULPO

Davidson said in an interview with The Linc that he’s “reasonably satisfied” with the budget report, and that the university is in a “stable financial situation”. “Redundancies aren’t on the horizon at the moment — we’re not looking at cuts to services at all,” he added.

It’s thanks to Lincoln’s totally modern campus that the university has avoided some of the big grant cuts. Neighbouring Bishop Grosseteste will see a 1.5% cut to their budget, due to its historic building conservation, which was dropped from the funding list by the HEFCE to save £40m.

Other universities to suffer from the historic building cuts are Oxford which lost £5.1m, Cambridge which lost £4.2m and UCL with £1.5m losses, according to a report in The Times.

However, despite the small budget increase, the previously announced cuts on bursaries for poor students at the University of Lincoln will still go ahead. Davidson said that the pre-emptive bursary cuts were the reason the university’s finances are “relatively stable”.

Davidson isn’t yet comfortable with the outlook for the university though: “We have a budget next week which we don’t know what it’s going to bring, and elections soon, where there could be a snap budget [change]”. He added that “all building work will go ahead as planned”, and that the university “will look to the future with confidence in managing [their] affairs prudently.”


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