Thursday, March 24, 2011

Ministers on ECF

The interview with Minister Quinn and Minister Bruton is here. Last one to leave please turn off the lights.

This is, for some reason, being thought of as a signal of a review of the third level embargo. Perhaps I am just a pessimist but the interview to me did not signal anything like that. It reaffirmed the false pretence that has led to a central state committee being granted absolute control at micro-level for every hire into the university system. I am sorry to keep posting on this and will find a more efficient way of going about this as there is no point in making this forum a casualty of this madness.

Addendum: Could I just be a little stronger here and say that this interview does not tell us anything that was not already present. Richard Bruton was clearly not trying to say anything substantive and looked like he was simply fobbing off the questions so he could get away and deal with other issues. Ruaidhri Quinn somewhat sarcastically indicated a willingness to listen to ideas from the "geniuses" in the university system and there are certainly people who will take him up on his offer but it hardly indicates that a review is taking place. I am, of course, aware that senior university figures are trying to deal with this but I think everybody who has been trying to draw attention to this important issue should continue to do so until something definitive and public is released. There is no evidence that any behind-closed-doors solution has been put together and the idea that people should stay quiet on an issue just because authority figures might be doing something good behind closed doors is not one that has served this country well in the last 10 years. People who care about autonomy in the universities and their vibrancy should look at this and form their own opinion and speak out if they think they should.

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