Face it, the reasons we all love Twenty Twelve (http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01f87nh) is because it holds a brilliant mirror up to institutions near us as research councils and universities struggle to make sense of our new demand-driven impact-hitting world. So why should tweenie magazines have all the fun: here is a quiz designed to find out just what sort of academic you are.
[This quiz has been written in a personal capacity and clearly any accidental resemblance to any real events in any university anywhere on the entire planet are entirely coincidental]
Your university has decided to hire a branding consultancy to help them shape up for the 21st Century HE environment. After spending £476K they announce your institution is now to be known as the ‘University of Inclusionary Diversity Impact’ replacing the old motto with the tagline ‘C’mon kids, jump in!’. What is your response?
(a) Way to go! All the rest of the research and teaching stuff isn’t exactly rugola science is it? But the thing is, what matters is getting the slogan right for the twibbons, twandanas and twi-shirts.
(b) Well I’m not really sure. It should perhaps be called the University of Sustainable Inclusionary Diversity Impact. I really do think that.
(c) What the **** is a branding consultancy?
(d) Sigh. Well I’d better get on with it the, although it barely seems to make any sense
2.In an unusual but irreversible logistical faux pas your institution decides to redesign the teaching curriculum around the colours of the rainbow without consultation with the teaching faculty. Do you:
(a) Embrace it, if we don’t let our heads fly through the clouds of ideas how are we ever going to land on the runway of freedom;
(b) Ask firmly that the colours of the rainbow be painted using colours containing no lead and natural pigments only;
(c) Really? This is never going to work AND it CERTAINLY wasn’t like that in my day;
(d) Sigh. Retreat to office and hope it will go away. Don’t take any calls.
3. There is a security alert on campus; some emails have got mixed up and sadly the local MP has been mistaken for the local rapscallion who keeps nicking undergrads’ ipods from their Halls of Residence. In the ensuing furore do you:
(a) Insist that if the MP will wear baseballs hats on backwards and tweet indiscriminately to capture the youth vote this sort of shit just happens right;
(b) Somehow contrive to get your ipod stolen;
(c) Feel a bit riled to end up with those GBH charges, after all you were only reacting to emails and acting as a good citizen to make an arrest;
(d) Sigh. Invite the MP to lunch in the university refectory. However, he may have picked up food poisoning;
4. Your Department has sent you to a ‘sandpit’ event for the new research program on ‘Connectivity Beyond the Environment’(*). After three days of intense ‘workshopping’ you find yourself:
(a) Like totally psyched for the whole thing, am precisely where I want to be this is so going to solve lots of problems with lots of really cool research and shit.
(b) Feeling really quite positive to be in a group that has come up with the under-rated issue of ‘Beatrix Potter, hedgehogs and connective feelings towards sheep’. It’s a shame it’s just you and an inexplicably grumpy person who accidentally went to the bathroom when the groups were forming themselves;
(c) Still sitting there with your arms folded going ‘What the bloody **** is this all about?’;
(d) Finding that trying to pretend you are somewhere completely different is working remarkably well, and in the end, it’s all good.
ANSWERS: Did you answer
Mostly (a)’s. Oh dear one too many ‘future visioning’ workshops seems to have sent you over the edge and you have accidentally turned into Siobhan Sharpe. Nothing that a two week holiday in the sun won’t fix.
Mostly (b)’s. Life has rather beaten it out of you so you don’t know whether you are coming or going and you seem to have become Kay Hope. Nothing that a two week holiday in the sun won’t fix.
Mostly (c)’s. You may not have realised this until now but you are probably from Yorkshire and you are Nick Jowett. You like things simple, straightforward and to work just the way they have always done. This may take longer to fix but you probably don’t want to be fixed.
Mostly (d)’s. You are Ian Fletcher or just any old academic. Go and have a two week holiday. You know you deserve one.
(*) Priority courtesy of the Research Council Priority Generator. http://rcukprigen.moonfruit.com/