• #Roberto_Mozzachiodi, UK


      After years of unparalleled academic and political work at Goldsmiths, our colleague, friend, teacher, caseworker, union branch co-Secretary #Roberto_Mozzachiodi has been put through an unfair employment process, and as a result no longer holds a substantive teaching position at the College. Roberto’s case reflects the working conditions of hundreds of staff at Goldsmiths, and thousands of staff employed on precarious, fixed-term, temporary contracts across British Higher Education. It also reflects the risks that come with openly committing to collective, ground-up solidarity that challenges the principles of how university work is organised, and reimagines union work accordingly.

      Roberto has been a leading figure in the fight against casualisation at Goldsmiths, and has been at the heart of campaigns that have radically transformed our place of work and study. He was core in the Goldsmiths #Justice_for_Cleaners and Goldsmiths #Justice_for_Workers movements that brought cleaning and security staff in-house, and core in the fight to extend basic rights to casualised workers at Goldsmiths at the height of the pandemic. He has supported countless staff and students through the grinding labour of union casework, and has worked tirelessly on strengthening and transforming the Goldsmiths branch of UCU through a radical commitment to anti-casualisation, anti-racism, and anti-factionalism, often fighting and organising for the rights of others in far more secure positions.

      Roberto’s specific case mirrors that of thousands across the country employed on temporary, fixed-term, and casualised contracts. Roberto was denied his redundancy-related employment rights when his contract came to an end. This involved, amongst other things, not being consulted on suitable alternative employment, including a permanent position very similar to the role he had been performing on a fixed-term basis over three terms. This amounts to a denial of casualised workers’ employment rights, and is something that is commonplace at Goldsmiths, and across the sector.

      As signatories of this letter, we call on Goldsmiths to act on the unjust treatment of Roberto. We also urge all at Goldsmiths and beyond to actively resist and challenge the endemic nature of precarious work in university life - at all times and at all scales, as Roberto has always done.


      Alice Elliot, Lecturer, Goldsmiths University of London
      Victoria Chwa, President, Goldsmiths Students’ Union
      Alicia Suriel Melchor, Operations Assistant, Forensic Architecture / Goldsmiths.
      Vicky Blake, UCU NEC, former president & Uni of Leeds UCU officer, former Chair of UCU Anti-Casualisation Committee
      Cecilia Wee, Associate Lecturer, Royal College of Art & co-Chair/co-Equalities RCA UCU branch
      Joe Newman, Lecturer, Goldsmiths, University of London
      James Eastwood, Co-Chair, Queen Mary UCU
      S Joss, HW UCU Branch President
      Rehana Zaman, Lecturer Art Department, Goldsmiths University of London
      Marina Baldissera Pacchetti, anti-cas officer, Leeds UCU
      Sam Morecroft, USIC UCU Branch President and UCU Anti Casualisation Committee
      Kyran Joughin, Anti-Casualisation Officer, UCU London Region Executive Committee, UCU NEC Member, former Branch Secretary, UCU-UAL
      Rhian Elinor Keyse, Postdoctoral Research Fellow; Birkbeck UCU Branch Secretary; UCU Anti-Casualisation Committee; UCU NEC
      Joanne Tatham, Reader, Royal College of Art and RCA UCU branch committee member, London
      Bianca Griffani, PhD candidate, Goldsmiths University of London, London
      Paola Debellis, PhD student, Goldsmiths, University of London.
      Ashok Kumar, Senior Lecturer, Birkbeck, University of London
      Chrys Papaioannou, Birkbeck UCU
      Fergal Hanna, PhD Student, University of Cambridge, UCU Anti-Casualisation Committee and Cambridge UCU Executive Committee member
      Robert Deakin, Research Assistant, Goldsmiths, University of London
      Grace Tillyard, ESRC postdoctoral fellow, MCCS Goldsmiths
      Yari Lanci, Associate Lecturer, Goldsmiths University of London.
      Caleb Day, Postgraduate researcher, Foundation tutor and UCU Anti-Casualisation Officer, Durham University
      Rachel Wilson, PhD Candidate, Goldsmiths University of London
      Sean Wallis, Branch President, UCL UCU, and NEC member
      Yaiza Hernández Velázquez, Lecturer, Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths.
      Akanksha Mehta, Lecturer, Goldsmiths, University of London
      Cathy Nugent, PhD Candidate, Goldsmiths, University of London
      Janna Graham, Lecturer Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths
      Isobel Harbison, Art Department, Goldsmiths
      Susan Kelly, Art Department, Goldsmiths
      Jessa Mockridge, Library, Goldsmiths
      Vincent Møystad, Associate Lecturer, MCCS, Goldsmiths
      Dhanveer Singh Brar, Lecturer, School of History, University of Leeds
      James Burton, Senior Lecturer, MCCS, Goldsmiths
      Louis Moreno, Lecturer, Goldsmiths
      Jennifer Warren, Visiting Lecturer, Goldsmiths MCCS
      Anthony Faramelli, Lecturer, Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths, University of London
      Billy Godfrey, Doctoral Researcher, Loughborough University; GTA, University of Manchester
      Fabiana Palladino, Associate Lecturer, Goldsmiths, University of London
      Morgan Rhys Powell, Doctoral Researcher and GTA; University of Manchester
      Tom Cowin, Anti-Casualisation Officer, Sussex UCU
      Conrad Moriarty-Cole, Lecturer, University of Brighton, and former PhD student at Goldsmiths College
      Marina Vishmidt, MCCS Lecturer, Goldsmiths University of London
      George Briley, Universities of London Branch Secretary, IWGB
      Callum Cant, Postdoctoral Researcher, Oxford Internet Institute
      Daniel C. Blight, Lecturer, University of Brighton
      Marion Lieutaud, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, LSE UCU anti-casualisation co-officer, London School of Economics
      Lukas Slothuus, LSE Fellow, LSE UCU anti-casualisation co-officer, London School of Economics
      Matthew Lee, UCL Unison Steward & IWGB Universities of London Representative
      Jamie Woodcock, University of Essex
      Dylan Carver, Anti-Casualisation Officer, University of Oxford
      Annie Goh, Lecturer, LCC UAL
      George Mather, PGR Anti-Casualisation Officer, University of Oxford
      Zara Dinnen, Branch co-chair QMUCU
      Henry Chango Lopez - IWGB Union, General Secretary
      Rhiannon Lockley - Branch Chair Birmingham City University UCU; UCU NEC
      Sol Gamsu, Branch President, Durham University UCU
      Ben Ralph, Branch President, University of Bath UCU
      Myka Tucker-Abramson, University of Warwick UCU
      Lisa Tilley, SOAS UCU
      James Brackley, Lecturer in Accounting, University of Sheffield
      Alex Fairfax-Cholmeley, Communications Officer, Uni of Exeter UCU
      Ioana Cerasella Chis, University of Birmingham (incoming branch officer)
      Muireann Crowley, University of Edinburgh, UCU Edinburgh
      Jonny Jones, associate lecturer, UCL
      Danai Avgeri, University of Cambridge, postdoctoral fellow
      Stefano Cremonesi, Durham University UCU
      Jordan Osserman, Lecturer, Essex UCU Member Secretary
      Danny Millum, Librarian, Sussex UCU Exec Member
      Sanaz Raji, ISRF Fellow, Northumbria University, Founder & Caseworker, Unis Resist Border Controls (URBC)
      Alex Brent, GMB South London Universities Branch Secretary
      Gareth Spencer, PCS Culture Group President
      Floyd Codlin, Environmental & Ethics Officer, Birkbeck
      Clare Qualmann, Associate Professor, University of East London and UCU branch treasurer, UEL
      Kevin Biderman, Brighton UCU anti-casualisation officer
      David Morris, CSM / University of the Arts London UCU
      Ryan Burns, Brighton UCU Secretary
      Julie canavan Brighton UCU
      Charlotte Terrell, Postdoc, Oxford UCU
      Clara Paillard, Unite the Union, former President of PCS Union Culture Group
      Jasmine Lota, PCS British Museum United Branch Secretary
      Joe Hayns, RHUL.
      Adam Barr, Birkbeck Unison
      Dario Carugo, Associate Professor, University of Oxford
      Jacob Gracie, KCL Fair Pay for GTAs
      Rahul Patel, UCU London Region Executive and Joint Sec University of the Arts London UCU
      Billy Woods, Essex UCU
      Lucy Mercer, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Exeter
      Goldsmiths Anti-Racist Action (GARA)
      Saumya Ranjan Nath, University of Sussex
      Islam al Khatib, 22/23 Welfare and Liberation Officer, Goldsmiths SU
      Mijke van der Drift, Tutor, Royal College of Art
      Marini Thorne, PHD student and teaching assistant, Columbia University and member of Student Workers of Columbia
      Genevieve Smart, PhD student, Birkbeck
      Francesco Pontarelli, Postdoctoral fellow, University of Johannesburg
      Gloria Lawton, Outreach Homeless Worker, HARP and undergraduate Birkbeck University.
      Grant Buttars, UCU Scotland Vice President
      Goldsmiths Community Solidarity
      Nicola Pratt, Professor, University of Warwick
      Robert Stearn, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Birkbeck, University of London
      Jake Arnfield, UVW Union
      Jarrah O’Neill, Cambridge UCU
      Owen Miller, Lecturer, SOAS
      Marissa Begonia, Director, The Voice of Domestic Workers
      Neda Genova, Research Fellow, University of Warwick
      Joey Whitfield, Cardiff University UCU
      Leila Mimmack, Equity Young Members Councillor
      Ross Gibson, University of Strathclyde
      Phill Wilson-Perkin, co-chair Bectu Art Technicians, London
      Isabelle Tarran, Campaigns and Activities Officer, Goldsmiths Students Union
      Leila Prasad, lecturer, Goldsmiths
      Malcolm James, University of Sussex
      Natalia Cecire, University of Sussex
      Daniel Molto, University of Sussex
      Emma Harrison, University of Sussex
      Margherita Huntley, University of the Arts London (Camberwell UCU)
      Gavin Schwartz-Leeper, Warwick University UCU Co-Chair
      Mary Wrenn, University of the West of England
      Aska Welford (United Voices of the World)
      855 Unterschriften:Nächstes Ziel: 1.000


      #petition #UK #Goldsmiths #precarity #union_work #British_Higher_Education #fixed_term #UCU

    • #Maria_Toft, Denmark

      In #Denmark #scientists are rolling out a nationwide #petition for a commission to investigate #research_freedom

      –> https://seenthis.net/messages/1009865

      PhD student at the Department of Political Science #Maria_Toft, in addition to the mentioned petition, also started a campaign under the hashtag #pleasedontstealmywork to stop the theft of research.

      –> https://seenthis.net/messages/1009866

      The national conversation about exploitation with #pleasedontstealmywork campaign was at the cost of #Maria_Tofts Copenhagen fellowship.

      –> https://www.timeshighereducation.com/news/campaigning-doctoral-candidate-resigns-hostile-environment (access if registered)

      This article assesses the #working_conditions of #precariat_researchers in #Denmark.

      –> https://seenthis.net/messages/1009867

      Twitter link: https://twitter.com/GirrKatja/status/1640636016330432512

    • #Heike_Egner, Austria

      Unterstütze #Heike_Egner für Grundrechte von Profs


      Ich sammle Spenden für eine juristische Klärung, die zwar meine Person betrifft, jedoch weitreichende Bedeutung für Professorinnen und Professoren im deutschsprachigen Wissenschaftsbereich hat. Die Entlassung einer Professorin oder eines Professors aus einer (unbefristeten) Professur galt bis vor kurzem noch als undenkbar. Mittlerweile ist das nicht nur möglich, sondern nimmt rasant zu.

      Der Sachverhalt: Ich wurde 2018 als Universitätsprofessorin fristlos entlassen. Für mich kam das aus heiterem Himmel, da es keinerlei Vorwarnung gab. Erst vor Gericht habe ich die Gründe dafür erfahren. Der Vorwurf lautet, ich hätte Mobbing und psychische Gewalt gegen wissenschaftliche Nachwuchskräfte und andere Mitarbeiter ausgeübt. Vor Gericht zeigte sich, dass die Vorwürfe durchwegs auf von mir vorgenommene Leistungsbewertungen basieren, die von den Betreffenden als ungerecht empfunden wurden. Die Bewertung von Leistungen von Studierenden und Nachwuchswissenschaftlern gehört zu den Dienstaufgaben einer Universitätsprofessorin, ebenso wie die Evaluierung von Leistungen der Mitarbeiter jenseits der Qualifikationserfordernisse zu den Dienstaufgaben einer Institutsvorständin an einer Universität gehört.

      Mittlerweile liegt der Fall beim Obersten Gerichtshof in Österreich. Ich habe eine „außerordentliche Revision“ eingereicht, da ich der Meinung bin, dass die Art meiner Entlassung von grundlegender Bedeutung für die Arbeitsbedingungen von Professoren an Universitäten ist. Unter anderem ist folgendes zu klären:

      Darf eine Universitätsprofessorin oder ein Universitätsprofessor aufgrund von anonym vorgetragenen Vorwürfen entlassen werden?
      Darf eine Universitätsprofessorin oder ein Universitätsprofessor aufgrund von ihr oder ihm durchgeführten negativen Leistungsbewertungen entlassen werden?

      Sollte die Berufungsentscheidung rechtskräftig bleiben, ist damit legitimiert, dass eine Professorin oder ein Professor aufgrund von freihändig formulierten und anonym vorgetragenen Behauptungen jederzeit entlassen werden kann. Dies entspricht einer willkürlichen Entlassung und öffnet Missbrauch Tür und Tor, da es Universitäten ermöglicht, sich jederzeit ihrer Professoren zu entledigen. Eine Universität ist aufgrund ihrer Struktur und ihres Auftrags eine grundsätzlich spannungsgeladene Organisation; hier lassen sich jederzeit unzufriedene Studenten, Nachwuchskräfte oder Mitarbeiter finden, die eine Beschwerde äußern. Die Möglichkeit willkürlicher Entlassung steht nicht nur in Konflikt mit den Formulierungen und der Zielsetzung des Arbeitnehmerschutzes, sondern auch mit der in der Verfassung verankerten Freiheit von Wissenschaft, Forschung und Lehre.

      Wofür bitte ich um Unterstützung?
      Es ist ein ungleicher Kampf, da die Universität Steuergelder in unbegrenzter Höhe zur Verfügung hat und ich – ohne Rechtsschutzversicherung – das volle Risiko des Rechtsstreits persönlich trage. Die bisherigen Kosten des Verfahrens belaufen sich auf etwa 120.000 € (eigene Anwaltskosten und Anwaltskosten der Gegenseite). Damit sind meine Ersparnisse weitgehend aufgebraucht.

      Mein Spendenziel beträgt 80.000 €.
      Dies umfasst die etwa 60.000 € Anwaltskosten der Gegenseite, die ich aufgrund des Urteils in zweiter Instanz zu tragen habe. Die weiteren 20.000 € fließen in die Forschung über die Entlassung von Professorinnen und Professoren, die ich seit 2020 mit einer Kollegin aus privaten Mitteln betreibe.

      Publizierte Forschungsergebnisse zur Entlassung von Professorinnen und Professoren

      Egner, Heike & Anke Uhlenwinkel (2021). Entlassung und öffentliche Degradierung von Professorinnen. Eine empirische Analyse struktureller Gemeinsamkeiten anscheinend unterschiedlicher „Fälle“. Beiträge zur Hochschulforschung, 43(1-2), 62–84. Download PDF
      Egner, Heike & Anke Uhlenwinkel (2021). Zur Rechtsstaatlichkeit universitätsinterner Verfahren bei Entlassung oder öffentlicher Degradierung von Professor*innen. Ordnung der Wissenschaft, 3(3), 173–184. Download PDF
      Egner, Heike & Anke Uhlenwinkel (2023). Über Schwierigkeiten der betriebsrätlichen Vertretung von Professor(innen). Zeitschrift für Hochschulrecht(22), 57–64.
      Egner, Heike & Anke Uhlenwinkel (2023). Zertifikat als Grundrecht? Über Leistungsansprüche und -erwartungen im Kontext struktureller Veränderungen an Universitäten. Hochschulwesen(1+2), 28–43.


      Aus dem Video: Rektor hat Betriebsratsvorsitzenden aufgetragen gezielt belastbares Material in Schriftform gegen Heike Enger zu sammeln. Betreibsrat kam Auffroderung bereiwilling nach und sprach gezielt Mitarbeitende an und bat sie aufzuschreiben, worüber sie sich geärgert haben und dies auszuhändigen. Zeuge der Universität hat dieses Vorgehen vor Gericht vorgetragen.

      #academia #university #Austria #Klagenfurt #professor #dismissal #arbitrary #publications #lawsuit #evaluation #scientific_freedom

    • #Susanne_Täuber, Netherlands

      Reinstate #Susanne_Täuber, protect social safety and academic freedom at the RUG

      10 March 2023

      To prof. Jouke de Vries, President, and members of the Board of the University of Groningen,

      We, the undersigned employees and students of the University of Groningen (UG), joined by concerned observers and colleagues at institutions around the world, are appalled at the firing of Dr. Susanne Täuber. The facts of this case are clear: Dr. Täuber was punished for exerting her academic freedom. The same court that allowed the UG to fire her also made it clear that it was the university’s negative reaction to an essay about her experiences of gender discrimination at the university that “seriously disturbed” their work relationship. Alarming details have also been made public about how the university pressured Dr. Täuber to censor future publications, in order to retain her position.

      The protest in front of the Academy Building on 8 March, International Women’s Day, and the continuing press attention and social media outcry, demonstrate that this case has consequences far beyond one university. Firing a scholar who publishes work that is critical of powerful institutions, including the university itself, sets a disturbing precedent for us all. We, the employees and students, ARE the UG, and we refuse to let this act be carried out in our names. We call on the University Board to reinstate Dr. Täuber, without delay, as an associate professor, and to ensure that she is provided with a safe working environment.

      The firing of Dr. Täuber has surfaced structural problems that necessitate immediate action by the University Board and all UG faculties. It is unacceptable that when a “disrupted employment relationship” emerges within a department, the more vulnerable person is fired. This points to a broader pattern at Dutch universities, as evidenced by the YAG Report (2021), the LNVH Report (2019), and other recent cases: in cases of transgressive behavior, Full Professors, Principal Investigators (PIs), and managers are protected, while employees of lower rank, or students, bear the consequences. If we are to continue performing our education and research mission, then this practice must be reformed, and the University of Groningen has an opportunity to lead here. We call on the University Board to work with labor unions, the LNVH, the University Council, and Faculty Councils to design and implement a safe, independent procedure for addressing violations of social safety: one that prioritizes the protection and support of vulnerable parties.

      Internal reforms will help ensure the safety of students and employees, but they will not repair the damage these events have caused to the reputation of the University of Groningen. The termination of a scholar who publishes field-leading research that is critical of academia has triggered doubts among employees, students, and the public about the UG’s commitment to academic freedom. This action is already raising concerns from talented job candidates, and we fear a chilling effect on critical research at the UG and beyond. We call on the University of Groningen, in partnership with the Universities of the Netherlands (UNL), the Ministry of Education, and the labor unions, to enshrine protections for academic freedom in the Collective Labor Agreement.

      Reinstate Dr. Täuber, reform complaint procedures, and establish binding protections for academic freedom. The relationship between the University of Groningen and the people it employs, teaches, and serves has been severely disrupted in the past weeks, but that relationship can be repaired if the Board begins taking these actions today.


      Leidse hoogleraar ging ‘meerdere jaren’ in de fout. (2022, October 25). NRC. https://www.nrc.nl/nieuws/2022/10/25/leidse-hoogleraar-ging-meerdere-jaren-in-de-fout-a4146291

      LNVH. (2019). Harassment in Dutch academia. Exploring manifestations, facilitating factors, effects and solutions. https://www.lnvh.nl/a-3078/harassment-in-dutch-academia.-exploring-manifestations-facilitating-factors-eff.

      Täuber, S. (2020). Undoing Gender in Academia: Personal Reflections on Equal Opportunity Schemes. Journal of Management Studies, 57(8), 1718–1724. https://doi.org/10.1111/joms.12516

      Upton, B. (2023, March 8). Court rules Groningen is free to fire critical lecturer. Times Higher Education (THE). https://www.timeshighereducation.com/news/court-rules-groningen-free-fire-critical-lecturer

      Veldhuis, P., & Marée, K. (2023, March 8). Groningse universiteit mag kritische docent ontslaan. NRC. https://www.nrc.nl/nieuws/2023/03/08/groningse-universiteit-mag-kritische-docent-ontslaan-a4158914

      Young Academy Groningen. (2021). Harassment at the University of Groningen. https://www.rug.nl/news/2021/10/young-academy-groningen-publishes-report-on-harassment-in-academia


      The article:

      Täuber, S. (2020) ‘Undoing Gender in Academia: Personal Reflections on Equal Opportunity Schemes’, Journal of Management Studies, 57(8), pp. 1718–1724.

      –> https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/joms.12516