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Travel, immigration, research funding and University preparations for a no deal exit from the EU were discussed at a recent open meeting.

I know that the uncertainty of Brexit has an impact on each one of you and I am determined to make sure that we are, as a University, as prepared as we can be.

Professor Stephen Toope, Vice-Chancellor

A video of the open meeting is available to University members online (Raven login required).

The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stephen Toope, opened the meeting, speaking of his frustration at the continuing uncertainty over the final shape of Brexit, but also of the University’s resolve to be as prepared as it can be to withstand any impact of the UK’s departure from the EU.

Over the past year, an EU Working Group has been working on the potential implications of Brexit on finance, research, human resources and other issues, consulting widely with experts within and outside the University. It has done extensive planning and preparation to mitigate the risks to the University posed by different Brexit scenarios.

In addition, the University Silver Team, which is an operational response group, is working in parallel with the EU Working Group and the Colleges to ensure the University is prepared for all aspects of a no-deal Brexit.

The Vice-Chancellor also outlined the University’s priorities in its engagement with government. The University is concerned about any changes to the immigration system that make it harder for academics, researchers, technicians and students to come and go. It is calling for caution about the imposition of the current Tier 4 route for students and the sponsorship systems in their current form. It is also talking to the Treasury and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy about the government underwrite for Horizon 2020 and the shape of any future domestic scheme to replace ERC and Marie Curie grants should the UK leave without a deal.

The other speakers were Professor Eilís Ferran (Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Institutional and International Relations), Anthony Dangerfield (Head of the International Student Office), and Professor Chris Abell (Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research). They gave the latest information about the travel and immigration implications of Brexit for staff and students, as well as its potential impact on research funding.

The audience then put questions to the panel on a variety of topics.

You can find up-to-date information on all the issues discussed at the meeting on the University’s Brexit webpage.

This is the first place to look for information from the University on Brexit-related issues. It also provides links to other University webpages and to external sites where more information can be found. Contact details for further queries are also provided. The Brexit webpage is updated whenever new information is available.

The University is committed to keeping staff and students informed in the coming weeks. Those who have particular concerns are advised to check the Brexit webpage regularly.