Savings-jobs deal delivers for three VCs who backed their judgement

Last month four vice chancellors joined union leaders to create an accord for universities to cut costs and save jobs. Three now have the agreements they needed

Within days over half public universities explicitly rejected the framework for individual institutions, mainly because it did not suit their circumstances but also because one element was unacceptable – an independent committee, including a union representative, to oversight savings plans.  The NTEU recognised defeat and pulled the plan – but three of the four VCs who worked on the accord went ahead.

John Dewar (La Trobe U) has decisively won agreement from staff to make savings via enterprise agreement variations. Margaret Gardner (Monash U) and Jane den Hollander (UWA) have had their proposals endorsed by union members, which are expected in both cases to be followed by all-staff endorsements.

But what about the fourth? That was the VCs’ lead in the negotiations, Andrew Vann from Charles Sturt U. Professor Vann, did not get a chance to put the plan in place, CSU’s council rejected it as, “complex and required compromise not acceptable to the university,” (CMM June 9).