Notices

Contents of this section:

[Note. An asterisk denotes a reference to a previously published or recurrent entry.]

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GEORGE WEBB MEDLEY ESSAY PRIZE 1996

The examiners have decided not to award the prize.

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University Gazette: TEMPORARY ALTERATION TO DEADLINE

Members of the University are asked to note that, with effect for the Gazettes of 13 February, 20 February, and 27 February (fourth to sixth weeks), the deadline for receipt of notices will be advanced to 12 noon on the preceding Thursday (i.e. noon on 6 February, for Gazette of 13 February; noon on 13 February, for Gazette of 20 February; noon on 20 February, for Gazette of 27 February).

It is emphasised that it will be necessary to adhere strictly to these deadlines.

The usual deadline of 5 p.m. on the preceding Thursday will apply to the 6 March and subsequent Gazettes.

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COMPUTING SERVICES

Archiving Computer Data

The OUCS central VAX service includes the provision of `archive' storage of inactive material. All users have had unrestricted access to this facility. The costs in terms of media, equipment and manpower are substantial, and would be greatly increased if regular copying continued to be performed to ensure that older material remains readable indefinitely. Also, the cost of disk storage has plummeted since the present system was set up in 1987.

The Technical Review Group of the University Information Technology Committee has therefore agreed, after consultation with the IT Users' Group, that this type of archive system will not be provided for storage of data from the new central Unix systems. These systems will have a fully supported service for reading material from the VAX archives, but this service will be wound down over a five-year period.

New facilities for archiving using the OUCS Hierarchical File Server will be available for University projects, under guidelines to be established by a Computing Archive Committee. For users who do not qualify for this central facility, there will be a new chargeable service for ongoing retention of material, at a rate which is yet to be determined but will not exceed £20 per gigabyte per year. Also, in the ten years since the VAX archive was set up, many new options for private storage have become available, such as personal computer hard disks, high-capacity tapes, and CD-Rom disks.

OUCS will also be offering a chargeable service to write CD-Rom disks, for archiving or transmission of data. Further information about all these new services will be released shortly.

VAX File Archive

The policy for future access is that files will be available up to five years from the date they were archived. Specifically, archives for the single years 1992 onwards will be removed at the end of the fifth year later, for example the OXFORD92 archive will be accessible only until 31 December 1997. The archive named OXFORD (covering 1987 to 1991) will be retained until 31 December 1997. The final closure of this service will be 31 December 2002. Access to files will be from the account on Sable or Ermine which has the same username as the old VAX account; it is the user's responsibility to ensure that registration remains valid for all such accounts.

Inactive VAX usernames

Current OUCS policy is that computer accounts are retained for as long as the owner has an appropriate status in the University. Prior to 1995, accounts on the VAX systems could also be closed if the user had been inactive for several months. The files were saved in the VAX archive, and can be restored if the owner re-activates the account. The time limit in this case is three years. Anyone relying on OUCS to preserve files for inactive usernames is strongly recommended to revive the username before Easter 1997 so that secure storage of this data can be arranged.

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SAFETY OFFICE

Safety Campaign, 3–14 February

The Committee on Health and Safety continues to recognise that the majority of accidents which happen in the University can be categorised under just two headings—`manual handling and lifting' and `glass and sharps' accidents—and is committed to reducing such accidents. To heighten awareness of the risks associated with the casual factors and the appropriate control measures, each employee will be sent a mainly humorous communication from the Safety Office, and departments will be displaying posters in communal areas. All members of the University are asked to give support to the safety campaign, and in particular to increase awareness of the safety message in students.

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WOMEN'S STUDIES COMMITTEE

The next meeting of the Oxford University Women's Studies Committee will be at 1 p.m. on Thursday, 6 February (third week), in the Senior Common Room, the St Cross Building, Manor Road.

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UNIVERSITY PROFESSIONAL INDEMNITY INSURANCE

Personal Consultancies

The University holds a Professional Indemnity Insurance policy which indemnifies the University, together with its employees and officers whilst acting on behalf of the University, against liability for damages (and claimants' costs and expenses) in respect of claims arising out of the University's activities as a university by reason of (amongst other things):

(i) any act, neglect, error, or omission, occurring or committed in good faith by the University (together with its employees and officers whilst acting on behalf of the University);

(ii) libel and slander committed in good faith by reason of words written or spoken by the University (together with its employees and officers whilst acting on behalf of the University).

In the event of liability arising from any dishonest or fraudulent act or omission, no person committing or condoning the act or omission is entitled to indemnity.

The policy does not cover the first £1,000 of any claim for damages.

The policy also provides the same cover for individual members of the University's academic, academic-related, and technical staff who undertake private work, provided that

(a) the permission of the University has been obtained, and

(b) fees received for such work are declared to the insurer.

It should be noted, however, that claims in US and Canadian courts are excluded.

This insurance cover is subject to a number of conditions, of which the most important are:

(a) that written notice is given to the insurance company as soon as possible after the University is aware of circumstances which might reasonably be expected to produce a claim against the University (including its employees and officers if within the cover)—irrespective of the validity of the claim—or as soon as it is informed of such a claim for which there may be liability under the insurance cover; and

(b) that every letter, claim, writ, summons and process is forwarded to the insurance company immediately on receipt. No admission, offer, promise, payment, or indemnity is to be made or given by or on behalf of the University (including its employees and officers if within the cover) without the written consent of the company.

Members of the academic staff undertaking consultancy work with the permission of the University (under the rules laid down by the General Board), and academic-related and technical staff (who must obtain the permission of the head of their department), are strongly urged to take advantage of this cover. They may do so by writing, on a strictly confidential basis, to Ms J. Clark, Director, Research Services Office, Wellington Square, Oxford, stating the name of the employer for each consultancy and the fee or the remuneration receivable.

The insurance company will only be notified of the aggregate number of consultancies and the aggregate fees on an annual basis except in the event of a claim, when details of a particular consultancy will be required by the insurer.

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ISIS INNOVATION LIMITED

2 South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3UB

Isis Innovation, a wholly-owned company of the University, was established in 1988. The company has been formed to exploit know-how arising out of research funded by the UK Government through the Research Councils and funded by other bodies where the rights are not tied. The function of the company is to ensure that the results of research bring rewards to Oxford, and to the inventors, who are given a financial incentive for exploitation.

Isis seeks licensees willing to pay lump sums andor royalties for the use of know-how arising out of research. Isis also exploits the intellectual property of the University by setting up individual companies using venture capital or development capital funds.

Isis' services are also available to individuals who wish to exploit the results of research supported by non-Research Council sources, when there are no prior conditions on the handling of the intellectual property rights. Isis Innovation has at its disposal a small pre-seedcorn fund for paying the costs of protecting intellectual property rights and for taking work to a stage where its potential can be assessed.

Isis finds industrial partners to ensure that new ideas can be developed for market requirements. The company has established the Oxford Innovation Society for major industrial companies, so that they can have a window on Oxford technology and an opportunity to license and invest where appropriate.

A brochure explaining Isis' activities is available. Please contact the above address, or the telephone and fax numbers given below.

Members of the University should contact the Managing Director if they wish to take advantage of the services that Isis provides. (Telephone: (2)72411; fax: (2)72412.)

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CIRCULATION OF FLYSHEETS

Ten or more members of Congregation may arrange to have a flysheet circulated with the Gazette (a) on matters before Congregation, or Convocation in regard to the election of the Professor of Poetry, or (b) relating to matters of general interest to the University, subject to the following general conditions:

(i) no flysheet will be circulated which in the opinion of the Vice-Chancellor and Proctors might be defamatory or otherwise illegal;

(ii) the right is reserved on behalf of the University and its employees, without prior consultation with the signatories, to publish an apology in respect of any statement in a flysheet which is complained of as defamatory or otherwise illegal (whether or not the statement can be shown to be true);

(iii) the signatories shall jointly and severally indemnify the University and its employees against any costs or damages payable in respect of their flysheet and, unless a Queen's Counsel (to be mutually agreed on by the signatories and the University) shall advise within four months of the making of any claim in respect of a flysheet that any proceedings could be contested with the probability of success, such damages shall include any sum paid by the University in settlement of any claim arising out of the flysheet;

(iv) the flysheet shall consist of one leaf only (though text may appear on both sides of the leaf); the text shall include the name and college or department of each of the signatories;

(v) a copy of the text of the flysheet shall be delivered to the Registrar before 10 a.m. on the Monday of the week in which circulation is desired; it shall be accompanied by an indemnity in accordance with condition (iii) above drawn up on a form obtainable from the Registrar and signed by each of the signatories of the flysheet; the Registrar shall be informed at the same time which of the signatories is to be notified whether the Vice-Chancellor and Proctors have authorised circulation;

(vi) the Registrar shall arrange for the production by the University Press of copies of a flysheet the circulation of which has been duly authorised.

Though every effort will be made to circulate on the day desired flysheets so received, it must be understood that this cannot be guaranteed.

(a) Matters before Congregation or Convocation

If the flysheet deals with a matter that is a formal agendum for Congregation, or for Convocation in regard to the election of the Professor of Poetry, or the subject of a report published in the Gazette, the production costs will be met from university funds.

(b) Matters of general interest to the University

If the flysheet deals with a matter that is not a formal agendum for Congregation or the subject of a report published in the Gazette, the Vice-Chancellor will decide whether it is of sufficient general interest to warrant circulation with the Gazette; the production costs for such a flysheet will be the responsibility of the signatories.

Oxford University Student Union

The Executive and the Graduate Committee of the Oxford University Student Union may have flysheets circulated with the Gazette under the arrangements and subject to the conditions set out above, provided that:

(1) the number of names to be included on the flysheet under condition (iv) shall be not less than a majority of the total number of members of the Executive or the Graduate Committee of OUSU, as the case may be, and each of the persons named shall sign the indemnity required under condition (v);

(2) the maximum number of flysheets to be circulated as of right, whether on matters before Congregation (to be paid for by the University) or on matters of general interest to the University (to be paid for by OUSU and to be subject to the Vice-Chancellor's decision as prescribed under (b) above) shall be three per term for each of these bodies, save that the Vice-Chancellor shall have discretion to permit further flysheets.

Subject to proviso (1) above, the Executive and the Graduate Committee of OUSU may also support flysheets signed by not less than ten members of Congregation.

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EXAMINATION SCHOOLS

Visitors to the Examination Schools are asked to note that work is currently in progress on the installation of a lift in the Schools which will improve accessibility for students with disabilities.

Members of the University are asked to be as tolerant as possible of any difficulties which this work may cause.