University of Oxford

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Oxford University Gazette, 13 May 2010: University Agenda

CONGREGATION 1 June 2 p.m.

¶ Members of Congregation are reminded that any two members may, not later than noon on Monday, 24 May, give notice in writing to the Registrar that they intend to oppose or amend the legislative proposal at 1 below or the resolution at 2 below (see the note on the conduct of business in Congregation below). If no such notice has been given, and unless Council has declared otherwise, the statute shall be declared approved for submission to Her Majesty in Council, the resolution shall be declared carried, and the meeting may be cancelled.

1 Voting on Legislative Proposal: Michael Davys Professor of Neuroscience

(For explanatory note and text of Legislative Proposal see Gazette, 6 May 2010.)

2 Voting on Resolution authorising use of space in the NERC Building

Explanatory Note

The NERC Building is on land leased by the University to the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) on a sixty-year ground lease that commenced in 1978. (The building is also known as 'the Institute of Virology', 'the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology', and 'the Tinsley Building') The terms of the lease state that if the NERC wishes to dispose of the remainder of the lease, the University has first refusal to acquire it. The University was formally notified by the NERC in March 2009 of its intention to dispose of the building. It is expected that early in 2010, the NERC and the University will enter into an 'agreement to surrender' the building, and that the building will be available to the University on 30 September 2010.

The accommodation is over four floors, including a basement. The fabric is relatively sound but the services must be considered to be at the end of their useful life. The building has provided offices and laboratories, including some high-level containment laboratories that have been used by and are of continuing interest to University researchers.

The building has been identified as the preferred location for the establishment of a new centre within the Department of Physiology, Anatomy, and Genetics.

The proposed centre will be supported by an initial £10m Strategic Award from the Gatsby Charitable Foundation and the Wellcome Trust. The centre will bring together external recruits already in place in Oxford, and will expand gradually, absorbing both existing and new groups. In the initial five-year period, it is anticipated that approximately six groups, comprising approximately sixty individuals in total, will affiliate with the centre. The work of these groups will be enabled through a set of shared technologies developed and supported by core facilities in a dedicated building. The strategic award will cover staff, infrastructure, and operating costs for shared core technologies as well as postdoctoral fellowships. The facilities will be available freely to centre members and on a cost- recovery basis to others.

The centre will deliver graduate and postgraduate training.

The business case for the refurbishment and occupation of the top two floors (i.e. the first and second floors) of the building for this purpose was approved by the Medical Sciences Divisional Board and the Capital Steering Group of PRAC in December 2009, and by PRAC and Council in January 2010. This allocation allows the Medical Sciences Division to meet one of its major 'space' and capital priorities, frees up space elsewhere in the buildings allocated to the Department of Physiology, Anatomy, and Genetics, and leaves space in the NERC building for other possible users.

Text of Resolution

That approximately 910 sq.m. of net useable space (the first and second floors) in the NERC building be allocated to the Department of Physiology, Anatomy, and Genetics for the establishment of a new centre.

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