Worrying signal concerning political control
The Uppsala University Board considers the government’s decision to shorten the term of office for external board members to be remarkable. It sends a worrying signal about increased political control and intervention in the autonomy of higher education institutions.
The dissatisfaction among vice-chancellors and boards at universities and colleges relates to the government’s decision in April this year specifying that board members should be appointed for a shorter term than usual. The term of office is to be shortened from three years to 17 months. According to the government, this is being implemented in the light of the global security situation and due to the importance of having security-related skills on the boards.
The Uppsala University Board endorses the criticism conveyed by vice-chancellors and chairs of the boards of Swedish higher education institutions in their written statements to the government.
Through its Chair, Ann Ramberg, the University Board encourages the government to restore the term of office for external members to three years without delay.