UCL News


UCL Life Sciences report published

12 February 2007

The report of a strategic review of the UCL Faculty of Life Sciences was published today by Professor Malcolm Grant, UCL President and Provost, along with a joint statement from Professor Peter Mobbs, Dean of the Faculty, and Professor Ed Byrne, incoming Dean of UCL Biomedical Sciences.


The report, by an external review panel chaired by Professor Alan North (University of Manchester), comments on and makes recommendations on the draft strategy for the Faculty proposed following an internal review led by Professor Mobbs. It builds on a strategic review of UCL's biomedical sciences over 2005/2006, that led to the creation of a new Faculty of Biomedical Sciences in August 2006. Each review included extensive internal consultation.

Following further discussion with his Senior Management Team, the Provost has accepted the recommendations (aside from that regarding the proposed number of small research groupings in the Faculty's new Division of Biosciences). Professor Mobbs will now draw up an implementation plan, which will commence with the identification of the academic leaders in the proposed new structure of UCL Life Sciences.

Professor Grant said: "This is a major step forward for our organisation of biological science at UCL, and I am immensely grateful to Professor North and the other members of the independent panel, as I am to all who have contributed to this very positive outcome. We will not merge these two major Faculties, but it will be essential to ensure that we get maximum advantage in research and teaching synergies and collaboration between them. We will therefore group the two Faculties informally as the UCL School of Medical & Life Sciences (UCL SMLS) and construct powerful strategic links between them."

The Deans' joint statement outlines a new model of strategic leadership across the new school. They said: "The new UCL SMLS is a mechanism to coordinate the research and teaching interests shared by the two Faculties, while providing for the essential, continued and improved support for strategically important activities unrelated to medicine. The two Faculties, while interdependent in several key areas, will remain independent entities and their Deans will each continue to report to the Provost. The UCL SMLS will work closely with the Deans of UCL Engineering Sciences and UCL Mathematical & Physical Sciences as reviews of their Faculties progress, to ensure the development of appropriate structures for strategies in areas of mutual interest in both teaching and research."

The Deans propose for the UCL SMLS:

  • a strategic coordinating committee to oversee all major shared activities, co-chaired by the two deans with membership including three senior academics from each Faculty and Faculty managers
  • research subcommittees to oversee cross-faculty programme and platform development
  • a joint education committee to oversee the UCL Medical School and other shared educational activities, with the MBBS Education Committee as a subcommittee
  • the UCL research planning office supporting research in both faculties and, by agreement, clinical research in affiliated NHS trusts
  • where appropriate, shared administrative support across both Faculties
  • academics will have an appointment within either UCL Life Sciences or UCL Biomedical Sciences, but may elect to have an affiliation elsewhere within the UCL SMLS
  • the branding of biomedicine at UCL will be through the UCL SMLS, which will be promoted as Europe's leading centre for research and teaching in the biomedical and basic biological sciences.

UCL staff may use the link at the top of this article to access the report and statement.

Image: Professor Malcolm Grant


Report and statement