University Executive Board minutes - 2 February 2021



2 February 2021


Professor K Lamberts (KL) (in the Chair) Professor J Derrick (JD), Professor S Fitzmaurice (SF), Professor S Hartley (SH), Professor M Hounslow (MJH), Ms H Fraser-Krauss (HFK), Ms J Jones (JJ), Professor C Newman (CN), Professor D Petley (DNP), Mr R Sykes (RS), Professor G Valentine (GV), Professor M Vincent (MV), Professor C Watkins (CW)

In attendance:

Dr T Strike (TS), Mr I Wright (IW)




Dr E Smith (ES)/Mr D Swinn (DS)

  1. Coronavirus Update

    • Update from the Major Incident Group
      • HFK reported that staff and student cases were low. It was pleasing to note that the contact tracing service was working well and the testing site was experiencing consistent levels of activity and equipped to scale up operations, if needed.
      • During discussion, UEB noted recent student-related security incidents and considered measures to ensure students conducted themselves appropriately in residences and the community. Attention was drawn to the fact that the fines for breaching restrictions had changed in the third national lockdown, and that student communications could make clear to students the penalties for doing so. It was also recognised that, while undesirable, some disciplinary actions may be required to address cases of poor student conduct.
      • Actions:
        • To prepare student communications in cooperation with Corporate Communications.
        • To liaise with the Director of Infrastructure to agree Security Services’ approach to future security incidents concerning COVID-19 breaches.
  2. Round Table

    • Global Engineering Challenge: MJH reported on the virtual staging of the GEC for 2020/21, including high student attendance figures and positive student feedback on the event.
    • Study Abroad: MV updated UEB on the proposed options for SEAS students studying Japanese Studies, who were unable to complete their Study Abroad year in 2020/21 due to COVID-19.
    • Committee Memberships: UEB endorsed a proposal from TS relating to committee memberships for 2020/21, including the operation of elections for the University’s statutory and non-statutory bodies.
    • Office for Students (OfS) Consultations: TS reported on three ongoing OfS consultations on reportable events, monetary penalties, and publication of information about HE providers, noting that UEB would receive further information about the third consultation in due course.
    • Council: TS reported that Council had formally appointed three new members, and that UEB members might be contacted to organise meetings as part of the new Council members’ induction activities.
    • Working Overseas: IW reported on planned work in Human Resources to establish the number of staff working overseas. UEB would receive an update in due course.
    • Staff Death: IW notified UEB about the sad death of a member of University staff.
    • Online Open Days: KL reported on planned work with Admissions to develop a proposal for UEB regarding the University’s operation of online open days.
    • Student Feedback: KL notified UEB about positive feedback from a student on their experience at the University in 2020/21 and their department’s provision of support to address the challenges of COVID-19.
    • AMRC: KL reported on planned communications in relation to the AMRC.
    • Digital Property: KL updated UEB about the University’s contribution to work on digital property within the Sheffield City Region (SCR). It was agreed that this work would be coordinated through Partnerships & Engagement.

A global reputation

Sheffield is a research university with a global reputation for excellence. We're a member of the Russell Group: one of the 24 leading UK universities for research and teaching.