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University Council 15 December 2022

Bijgewerkt op: 22 dec. 2022

Health and safety environmental plan 2023 - For consent

The 2023 Annual Plan Occupational Health, Safety & Environment was discussed during the University Council. This is a plan which is drawn up based on the Risk inventory (RI&E) in which activities, responsibilities, finances and timelines are clearly stated. The preparation of this Plan is an obligation from the Occupational Health and Safety Act (Arbowet). Currently, the draft RI&E report on working conditions from ArboNed is under review by the Prevention Team. The final report will be presented to the Executive Board in early 2023, after which the outcome will be added to this Annual Plan Occupational Health, Safety & Environment.

Dual Career Regulations - For consent

The University Council was informed of the evaluation of the dual career policy and the policy changes that resulted from this evaluation. These changes take effect from January 2023 onwards. Most of the textual changes are clarifications that contribute to the practicality of the regulations and make it more in line with current practice. We will provide more context for two specific changes. First of all, there has been added that first year undergraduates applying for a talent status, because they are part of the Vidar competition selection, must have completed a minimum of 18 ects in their first semester. Besides, the dual career policy was expanded to not only include students with a top-level sports status, but to also support students with a wider range of talents. In the evaluation of 2022, the choice for hockey grants was evaluated, and it was proposed to transform these hockey grants into more general talent scholarships to which all talents can apply.
The University Council gave a unanimous positive consent.

Budget plan & Headlines Budget - For consent & advice

This University Council we discussed the budget of the university. The following is a brief explanation of this budget and its main points. For more information on the budget feel free to contact us or come by.
TiU receives this year a total of € 27.1 million additional funds. The additional funds are composed of € 6.5 million sector plan funds, € 12.1 million starting grants and € 8.5 million incentive grants.

Sector plan funds will be in the benefit of:
  • Mental illness

  • Social inequality & diversity and educational sciences

  • Human AI and cultural heritage & identity

Starting and incentive grants will be in the benefit of:
  • Unbound research

  • Reduce the work, competition and application pressure.

The University Council gave unanimous positive advice.

Elaboration memo: Ecosystems - For advice

The importance of ecosystems is explicitly included in our strategic plan Weaving Minds & Characters, Strategy toward 2027. After all, connections in a well-functioning ecosystem are crucial for the realization of our ambitions in co-creation with the world around us. This Elaboration memo outlines what is needed to strengthen and structurally embed policy, preconditions and coordination for ecosystems within Tilburg University. A 3-layer model for strategic collaborations is introduced and content is given for the necessary structure and formation. The main activities for 2023 are identified. Developing, adequately designing and managing ecosystems will become a new task. The ecosystems team provides support to the entire TiU organization, especially the Executive Board, the Schools and interdisciplinary initiatives such as the University-wide academic Collaboration Centers (academische werkplaatsen). Front has brought to the attention that we lack the overview of all existing ecosystems at Tilburg University and their functioning. The Executive Board states that in the memo there is a planning for further elaboration in January.
With that in mind, the University Council gave a unanimous positive advice.

Elaboration memo: Towards a sustainable university - For advice

This elaboration memo describes objectives in 10 parts to structurally embed sustainability in our business operations. The 10 components are:
A. Sustainable mobility,
B. Energy transition and reduction of energy consumption
C. Sustainability and circularity
D. Increasing space efficiency
E. Sustainability in procurement
F. Strengthening biodiversity
G. Healthy Campus
H. Sustainability rankings
I. Sustainability reporting and the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive
J. Correct and more visible communication

Implementation will be taken up by the already appointed program manager and by project leaders within the regular lines of the organization. Fine goals have been set regarding the sustainability of the university. Many other universities can take example from our "courageous" plans. However, Front feels that some of the plans are very ambitious and very optimistic for the reality of this deadline to be achieved as early as 2027. The Executive Board indicated that it is better for them to be too ambitious to achieve as many of these sustainability goals as possible.
The University Council gave a unanimous positive advice.

Elaboration memo: Untangle & unburden - reduce 1/3 of internal rules and procedures - For advice

This is also an elaboration memo from the Strategy 2022-2027 that TiU wants to implement. The goal of this program is to enable all our employees and students to spend more time on their primary focus and less time on admistration and control. They want to do that by: 1) Implement a more trust-based approach (by reducing rules & controls);
2) Aiming for a significant reduction of our internal rules, policies and procedures;
3) Ensuring our processes are (continuous) more untangled designed. In the next steps are among other things forming a pioneer and project team. Front raised their concerns about including students in these pioneer networks regarding student issues.
The overall outlines from this elaboration memo were sufficient enough for a starting point, but because it did not provide enough information and clear guidelines the University Council gave a unanimous negative advise.

Elaboration memo: Lifelong development - For advice

The Lifelong development (LLD) steering commission is asking the executive board to approve starting a program for lifelong development at Tilburg University. Within the strategy, the ambition is stated to make lifelong development a 4th core task. In order to create a successful and lasting LLD program the steering commission is convinced it is necessary to start small and gradually grow. This elaboration memo is describing phase 1 in detail. Based on the experience of phase 1, a detailed business plan of phase 2 needs to be created towards the end of phase 1. Lifelong development at universities is a radical innovation which needs time to become a core part of the existing portfolio of Tilburg University. By offering a Tilburg University LLD program, the university positions itself as a broad knowledge institute.
The University Council gave a unanimous positive advice.

JADS Participation - For advice

During this university council, we also discussed the joint regulation JADS 2019, which stipulates that, for the benefit of the participation of students and staff studying or working in Den Bosch, there will be a regulation for a joint sub-council JADS/db and for programme committees. This will be realised by establishing the council for the Joint Degree MSc. This council will fulfill the function of both the faculty council and the program committee and has a parity composition of 4 students and 4 staff members.
The University Council gave a unanimous positive advice.

Minors policy - For discussion

In 2020, Student Party Front submitted an initiative proposal on setting up a Career minor, giving students more practical experience and preparing them for the labour market. A working group emerged from this, looking to identify possible new initiatives. There will be six minor types, namely introductory minors, multidisciplinary/interdisciplinary minors, specialization minors, practice minors, bridging minors and free minors. The University will first put their focus on improving the website and other recommendations will be taken up and taken into account in the formulation of the brief when the strategic brief regarding the mobility window is developed.
There was a unanimous positive advice.

Tender principles Vending - For discussion

All machinery will be replaced in 2023. A large group of students and staff have been asked about their opinion on the vending machines: i.e. coffee & tea, plus the soda and candy-machines. In essence we all want good coffee, wide availability of fresh water and the university agrees that sugary and salty products are bad for us. They also agree that from time to time we do need them, so they will not ban them entirely. The principles for the tender process have now been set by the Board and are underway in the tender process: in essence we will take a further step in sustainability. Less machines where possible, water taps in busy places around lecture halls, less candy and soda machines. There is a striving for good coffee from fresh grounded beans. Machines will lose chocolate-option (very high on sugar) and soup (very high on salt). Less machines where possible to reduce energy consumption. The market will be asked for a combined option in every machine of dairy milk and plant-based milk. Front doesn’t agree with this agreement since we find it important that students have the choice at the vending machines. There is a lot of students that use of the chocolate milk and soup option so we have indicated that at least in a few places these options will be retained.

Energy and closing buildings earlier - For discussion

From a sustainable mindset, Tilburg University is concerned with the "energy transition" within its real estate and other affairs. However, due to high energy prices, the issue of energy transition has become even more urgent, and the question has arisen of what we can do in the short term to reduce costs. Our ambition is not to immediately reverse chosen measures after possible reductions in costs. This proposal is to reduce energy cost by closing buildings earlier, turning off energy systems, and concentrating activities in certain buildings. We think this is an excellent proposal towards a more sustainable university. We asked questions about the closure of Building T because we had already heard that there was no proper communication with the associations located in Building T. We expressed our regret that this was not done properly in consultation, since there are also a number of student boards that work at night after 19:00. The Executive Board stated this was a mistake and will go into discussion with these boards.


Any Other Business

Front's Initiative Proposal Extending of Exchange Procedure

During this University Council, Student Party Front submitted an initiative regarding expanding the exchange procedure. Currently, the selection procedure is only based on GPA, which means students with the highest grades are more likely to go to their preferred destination. Front believes it is important for students to develop themselves beyond their studies and believes the exchange procedure should reflect the student's entire career and not just the GPA. Therefore, Front has proposed to extend the exchange procedure to include a motivation, CV and/or scorecard.

Front's Letter Digitalisation of education

This University Council we - Student Party Front - have raised the need for an interim solution ahead of the implementation of blended learning. The strategy of 2023-2027 states that online education can enhance the quality and flexibility of education in some cases, but that physical education also has added value and therefore a blended learning model aimed to be implemented by 2027. This means that there will be a bridging period, a
development period, between 2022 and 2027 in terms of the application of digitalisation, something that we do not consider desirable. Therefore, we suggested the Executive Board, deans and teachers to take this need for an interim solution into account in their teaching. We have proposed a practical interim solution of recording the lectures and making them available online shortly before the start (at least two weeks) of the exams. This way, this
will give students reference material to better prepare for exams, but still ensure attendance, participation and interaction during lecture weeks. Besides having reference material for students, we also see advantages in terms of inclusiveness and equity in offering reference material online. To draft the letter, we had discussions with several lecturers, students and also used information from the faculties. For this reason, because every faculty understands the urgency to offer an interim solution for students, every student party has signed this letter. Following this letter, we hope to be able to sit down with all parties to put this plan into effect as soon as possible
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