Nominations for Election to Senate

If you would like to help enhance the academic standards of the University and to contribute directly to the University’s strategic development, please put yourself forward for election to join the Senate next Session. 

The Senate plays a key role in fostering the University as a Values-Led Organisation:

  • Belong to a diverse, inclusive and international community working together across boundaries and cultures.
  • Collaborate by working in partnership to shape the future whilst taking responsibility for our own actions.
  • Inspire curiosity to learn and find solutions that transform lives.
  • Celebrate excellence and take pride in the achievements of our students, staff and alumni.

Nominations are now welcome (Thursday 11 April to Wednesday 1 May 2019) if you wish to stand for election as a Senator in your School for the next three years. 

There are vacancies from 1 August 2019 in the following Schools:

  • Engineering and Physical Sciences has seven vacancies
  • Energy, Geoscience, Infrastructure and Society has four vacancies
  • Textiles and Design has two vacancies
  • Social Sciences (including EBS*) has one vacancy

The responsibilities of Senate are specified in the University’s Statutes.

Any member of our Academic Staff with a permanent (that is, open-ended) appointment can stand for election as a Senator. You may only nominate, stand or vote for a position in your own School. Nominations are welcome from colleagues from all of our campuses, whether in Scotland, Dubai or Malaysia.

* NB Colleagues currently based in the Edinburgh Business School will from 1 August 2019 be part of the School of Social Sciences, and therefore, for the purposes of this election, are treated as members of the SoSS ‘constituency’. Current members of EBS Staff are eligible to stand for the vacancy in SoSS that is to be filled through this election process.


Colleagues are elected from Schools to bring to Senate their individual diverse academic experience and perspectives in order to help enhance the academic standards of the University and develop and monitor our academic strategies. 

Induction to the role of Senator is provided every year to newly elected Senators.

There normally are five meetings of the Senate each Session, and you can gain a flavour of the meetings from the minutes that are available online.

Senators are expected to take time to prepare in advance for meetings, and it is essential that each Senator maintains a high level of attendance at meetings and participates in discussions. You must be able to devote sufficient time to the role. Senate meetings take place in mornings (UK time) so as to better include colleagues based outwith the UK. The meetings are normally on a Wednesday or Thursday.


You are eligible to nominate, vote or stand for your School in this election if you hold a contract as:

  • a permanent full-time or permanent part-time member of the Academic Staff; or
  • a research staff member on a permanent contract.

The University continues to be committed to achieving greater diversity across the membership of all its committees, recognising for example, that women are often underrepresented. We recognise that governance is enhanced through diversity of membership as this ensures that a broad base of knowledge and experience is brought to our decision-making. All eligible members of Staff are therefore encouraged to participate in the election, with especial encouragement given to women and those colleagues with currently underrepresented backgrounds and perspectives.

Ex-Officio members of the Senate (e.g. Heads of School or Deans) are not eligible to nominate, vote or stand for election.

If more candidates come forward than there are places available for any of the Schools, then an election contest shall be held in May 2019. For each School where an election is required, eligible colleagues will be e-mailed details in due course.


After serving an initial term of three years, a Senator shall be eligible to stand for election for immediate reappointment for one further period of up to three years. Of those Senators whose terms of office expire in 2019, some are eligible to stand again, but a number must stand down.


  • Nomination: forms are available from Thursday 11 April 2019 on the website, and completed forms should be returned to John McDermott by Wednesday 1 May 2019 (4.00 pm UK time).
  • Voting: if necessary for any School, voting will take place between mid and late May 2019. Voting will be conducted independently, by the Electoral Reform Society, and the single transferrable voting system will be used.
  • Successful candidates will take office as a Senator on 1 August 2019, and will serve for three years until 31 July 2022.

Ordinance C1 governs these elections. Please contact John McDermott (Officer to the Secretariat) for more information.

Ann Marie Dalton-Pillay

Secretary of the University

April 2019