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Chair of Council

Professional Services

Location:  Highfield Campus
Salary:   Unremunerated
Closing Date:  Sunday 09 July 2023
Reference:  2307423P1

Contribute to our Success

The University of Southampton is a leading research-intensive University, a founding member of the prestigious Russell Group, and one of the top 100 universities worldwide. We deliver excellent educational experience and world-leading research and we are known for successfully commercialising our research through enterprise.  

We are seeking a new Chair of Council. This is an exciting time to join the University of Southampton, and joining us as Chair of Council, you will have the opportunity to help us make a tangible difference to future generations.    

At Southampton, our aim is to change the world for the better. We care about the challenges that humanity is facing and work to support others on both a local and global scale. Bringing together realms of research, creativity and knowledge, we are focused on having a truly collaborative, immersive and groundbreaking impact.  

This vital role leads our Council, the body that contributes to the development of the University and plays an important part in shaping, determining and championing our Strategy.

The University Council is the main governing body of the University of Southampton and acts as a champion for every member of our staff and student community. The Council has responsibility for the administration of the University, for managing its resources, and for supporting and guiding the senior management in the delivery of the strategy and achieving our bold ambitions.   

About the role

As the new Chair, you will provide clear leadership to the Council to ensure all members and the University’s senior management team are working effectively and in collaboration, you will be responsible for overviewing the performance of the Council and work in close cooperation with our President and Vice-Chancellor to provide support and advice while respecting executive responsibility.  

You will act as an ambassador for the University and represent us externally, you will contribute to our success as a member of various committees, which play key roles in the detailed governance and oversight of the University, such as Pension, Finance, Estates, and Infrastructure, and Remuneration Committee.  

About you

We welcome expressions of interest from individuals with an exceptional track record of success in their own field, who bring strategic leadership qualities established through senior roles in complex and diverse organisations.   

You will have previous board member experience, either executive or non-executive and confidence in operating in a high-profile position with a record of encouraging bold thinking, risk-taking, and strategic decision-making. As the new Chair you will bring strong commercial acumen and strategic thinking skills with a high awareness and sensitivity towards potential conflicts that can arise within a complex organisation. 

The Council meets eight times per year (one of which is a strategic awayday) and the time commitment for the Chair role is approximately four days per month.  

This is a voluntary role, and in return for your commitment and contribution, you will benefit from being part of a successful and ambitious University seeking to maximise opportunities for its community. You will also have the opportunity to build professional networks, and further build your non-executive profile and impact.

The University of Southampton is committed to equality, diversity, and inclusion. We believe that we can only truly meet our objectives if we are reflective of society, so we are passionate about creating a diverse environment. Therefore, we particularly encourage applications that will continue to strengthen the diversity of our governing body. We are a Stonewall Diversity Champion, and are immensely proud to have been awarded an institutional Athena SWAN silver award, which underpins our pledge to improve equality for women. We are also delighted to have received the Race Equality Charter bronze award from Advance HE, which recognises that we have a solid foundation for eliminating racial inequalities and developing an inclusive culture that values all staff and students. We work with our people to ensure their ideas are always heard, and we invite you to share your background and life experiences with us to help us create a truly unique working environment. 

Join us and make your mark on the world at the University of Southampton:

Important Dates: 

The closing date for receipt of applications is midnight (GMT) on Sunday, 9th of July 2023.

Successful candidates will be invited to in-person interviews that are scheduled to take place on Tuesday, 19th of September 2023.

To apply for the role please send your CV and Cover Letter directly to Lee Abraham

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