The University was established in 1976 and was incorporated by Royal Charter (RC000730) as the University of Buckingham on February 11, 1983. During 2016/17 and again in 2018/19, the University undertook a comprehensive review of its governance that resulted in revisions to the Charter and Statutes. The latest of these revisions were approved by a Special Resolution of Council on January 11th, 2019 and were subsequently ratified by the Privy Council on February 13, 2019.
The University is not-for profit and is a registered charity. It is a Recognised Body under Statutory Instrument No.2992 (The Education (Recognised Bodies) (England)) Order 2013 and is authorised by its Royal Charter to award taught and research degrees in perpetuity.
The Charter and Statutes set out the primary governance structures of the University. These currently comprise two statutory bodies: the Council and the Senate. Whereas the Council is the governing body, the Senate is the principal academic authority, responsible for academic standards and the quality and enhancement of students’ learning opportunities.
The Council is the senior body acting with legal and financial accountability for the University of Buckingham. The membership and powers of the Council are stipulated in the Statutes; its powers include: the appointment of officers of the University, the establishment, on the recommendation of the Senate, of academic posts and the appointment of persons to said academic posts, the authorisation of salaries and conditions of tenure of University staff, the establishment, on the recommendation of the Senate, of the organs of academic administration, the governance and management of the University’s finances and contractual arrangements and the establishment of such committees as are necessary to enable the Council to conduct its business efficiently and effectively. The Council’s Standing Orders prescribe the means by which Council business is scheduled, recorded and actioned.
The work of the Council is supported by a number of sub-committees, each of which is established with clear Terms of Reference: the Finance, Estates and Resources Committee, the Risk, Audit and Compliance Committee and the Nominations, Performance and Remuneration Committee.
The current members of the University Council are:
- The Chancellor: Lady Keswick
- The Chair of the Council: Mr Rory Tapner
- The Vice-Chair of the Council: Professor John McIntosh
- The Treasurer: Mr Mohammad Syed
- The Vice-Chancellor: Sir Anthony Seldon
- The Pro Vice-Chancellors: Professor John Clapham and Dr Jane Tapsell
- The President of the Students’ Union: Mr Robindra Banerjee
- The Appointed Lay Members: Professor Joe Harrison, Mr Nick Hillman, Ms Penny Jones, Mr Stephen Rubin QC, Mr Mark Rushton, Professor Alan Smithers and Ms Milly Soames.
- The Elected Members: Dr Patricia Covarrubia, Dr Kenny Langlands, Dr Claire Stocker and Mr Chris Payne
The Senate is the University of Buckingham’s principal academic authority. The membership and powers of the Senate are stipulated in the Statutes; its powers include: the regulation and control of all academic awards as well as the programming and teaching that facilitates students’ admission to said academic awards, the management of the formalities associated with making academic awards and the regulation of University discipline. The Senate is also responsible for overseeing the development of the University’s academic portfolio (including all associated research, learning and teaching and assessment activities), for the admission of students and for all areas pertaining to academic delivery and support. The Senate’s Standing Orders prescribe the means by which Senate business is scheduled, recorded and actioned.
The work of the Senate is supported by a number of sub-committees, each of which is established with clear Terms of Reference and each of which operates either with delegated authority and/or in a deliberative context: the University Research Committee, the University Learning & Teaching Committee, the University Collaborations Committee and the School Boards of Study. At School level, Boards of Study are supported by Learning and Teaching, Ethics and Research Committees.