UCU@QUB announces symposium fund

29 January 2018

UCU@QUB announces symposium fund


The UCU President at Queen’s, Fabian Schuppert, has announced an annual fund of £6,000 to support academic conferences and symposia organised by union members at the university.


“The fund is being operated on a trial basis this year, and is aimed it supporting colleagues at Queen’s in enriching our knowledge of the latest research and people’s experiences in HE. UCU at Queen’s is keen to help the university make informed decisions grounded in robust research when it comes to running the university. It is important that research institutions like ours are thinking deeply about how research informs internal decision-making”, he said.


Any events supported by the Symposium Fund must accord with the UCU’s Aims and Objects, and in 2018 UCU@QUB would particularly like to support events that focus on the following issues:


Equality in HE; Academic Standards ; Neoliberalism and HE Policy (including casualisation); Workload and Stress; Building the Union; A Better Future for Queen’s; Brexit and HE in Northern Ireland.


Proposed conferences/symposia should ideally aim to develop our understanding of policy issues related to HE, particularly as they pertain to Queen’s. In cases where there might be doubt as to whether this criterion is satisfied, applicants are encouraged to make their case.

A conference/symposium supported by the fund must be so organized that attendance is not by invitation only, or restricted to members of particular institutions. It should be advertised widely, at least to UCU members (across NI), through the SU, and to members of the media and all political parties at Stormont.  In addition, we expect conference organisers to consider issues of diversity (e.g. gender, ethnicity,  disability).  Organisers are welcome, though not required, to describe the efforts they have made in this regard.


The Fund will support reasonable travel, accommodation and subsistence expenses, though please be mindful, when calculating costs, that this is union money and members demand value for their money. Be as accurate as possible with projected costs (use quotes from hotels and venues, sample air fares, etc.).


Value for money, conference topic and quality of research presented will be the key criteria in awarding grants. The Committee’s decision will be final.


Grant applications will be assessed twice per year by a subcommittee of the UCU Committee at QUB, with deadlines of 15 December and 15 March. Applicants will be advised of funding decisions within two weeks of those dates.

The total budget for grants at each deadline is £3,000, and the subcommittee will typically award no more than £1,500 to any one event, though may consider greater amounts in exceptional circumstances. We will not support retrospective grants.

Applications for grants should be made in less than 500 words to the Honorary Secretary of the UCU at Queen’s, and emailed to ucuatqub@gmail.com

Postal applications will not be accepted.


***Further conditions attached to the receipt of a grant are available at www. ucuqub.org
1. The role of the UCU@QUB in supporting the conference should be acknowledged in conference literature; please seek a high-resolution copy of our logo for all online and print media and insert the line ‘This event is supported by the UCU at Queen’s’ on posters, leaflets and general advertisements.

2.. The conference should be open and widely advertised.

  1. No later than 3 months after the conference, a conference report should be sent by email to the Honorary Secretary. This should include itemised accounts for the conference finances and an assessment of how well the conference met the aims set out in the application for a grant. The report should also include a publishable record of no more than 500 words, which may be used in the local UCU newsletter (and please also provide photos).
  2. The Committee will also consider applications for extra funds to contribute to accessibility costs for conference attendees. Applications for this supplement should be made in strictest confidence to the Treasurer, at: ucuatqub@gmail.com
  3. Expenses will only be paid if relevant receipts are provided to the UCU Treasurer.