Bangor bids for big time with new posts

Bangor University has unveiled plans to appoint more than 50 academics, including 23 professors, in its biggest expansion for decades.

More than £10 million is to be invested in the posts over the next four years as the university presses ahead with a development programme that aims to significantly boost its research standing.

The posts, advertised in The Times Higher this week, include heads for three out of six new colleges created at Bangor as part of an internal reorganisation. Successful applicants will lead colleges in natural sciences, health and behavioural sciences, physical and applied sciences.

Ten of the posts are directly linked to a new alliance with Aberystwyth University to jointly conduct research across a range of disciplines, beginning with environmental science, materials science, English and history.

Another six posts are related to Bangor's part in a new multi-centre Wales Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, with Cardiff and Swansea universities.

Between them, these initiatives have won Bangor a £7.5 million share of resources set aside for collaboration by the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales.

Among the other senior posts advertised are chairs in environmental genomics, environmental systems, marine biology of coastal shelf seas, materials chemistry, electronic materials and devices, cognitive neuroscience, early modern studies, criminology and law, creative writing, bilingualism, and early years education.

Bangor's strategic plan, published last autumn, says the university is aiming for "transformational change" by shedding underperforming staff as well as seeking rising research stars.

Fergus Lowe, deputy vice-chancellor at Bangor, said: "The establishment of these new academic posts, especially with so many of them at professorial level, is a significant opportunity for Bangor to advance its ambition to be a major player on the international stage."

Professor Lowe added that Bangor would "almost certainly" be seeking to fill even more posts in the near future, in a range of disciplines including geography.

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