PETER ROBINSON ON HIS APPOINTMENT
Roberto di Matteo, the caretaker manager of Chelsea, is said to have left his ego at the entrance when he took on the job. I would like to emulate him in that, and to encourage it. My vision for the department is one in which we all take group responsibility and manage through conferring and collaboration. I’m much in favour of rationing communication by e- mail, and prefer to walk the corridors, going and sitting in people’s rooms so as to talk things over and benefit from advice. We have seen how modular degree programmes and research specialization may lead to fragmentation of the subject. I would like to encourage cross-fertilization of research areas and teaching specialisms, as well as an interest in all the department’s extracurricular activities shared by both staff and students. Currently around the top of the championship, Reading FC looks set to be promoted to the premier league next season. My plan is to follow in its footsteps through well-organized, mutually supportive improvement on the key fronts of our teaching and pastoral care (already much appreciated in student surveys), our intensive research and publication programmes, and our local and more widely-ranging cultural community service. I look forward to discussing at length with staff and students ways in which the department will be enabled to achieve these and other goals over the coming years.
(Photo credit: Tony Barker)