World-Class Academics Are Flocking to University Jobs; Capital of Culture Is Part of Attraction

Article excerpt

Byline: BY DEBORAH JAMES AND GRAHAM DAVIES

THE University of Liverpool has lured 40 world class academics to take up senior positions.

It follows a major recruitment drive in which the university pumped funding into an international advertising campaign for high quality staff.

But the new scholars say part of the attraction was the regeneration of the city itself and its Capital of Culture status.

Vice-chancellor, Professor Drummond Bone, said last night: '

This initiative is a vital part of our research investment in order to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

'It is essential that we not only support our existing staff but attract world class research stars into strategically important areas to secure our position as a leading research university.

'I am delighted our recruitment drive has been so successful.'

Appointments include archaeologist Dr Lawrence Barham, who has left his post at Bristol University.

His most recent research was in an unexplored valley in Zambia, where he discovered stone tools more than 1.5m years old.

He said: 'The attraction of Liverpool was irresistible on both academic and personal fronts.

'The chance to work with world class archaeologists in fields related to my own, as well as experts in other aspects of the study of human origins, was the primary impetus for my applying to the university.

'But as well as joining a highly-respected institution with colleagues who shared my own interests, I am now living in a fantastic, lively place, well deserving of its European Capital of Culture award.'

Prof Tim Kirkham has been appointed to a Chair in Psychology. He previously carried out research at Reading University, on how people's minds influence what they eat, and the effects of active ingredients in cannabis. …