The University of Northampton was first formed in 1261, the third university in England, after Oxford and Cambridge. Henry III dissolved the university in 1265, signing a Royal Decree that banned the establishment of a university in Northampton.
The decree was repealed in 2005 allowing the then University College Northampton to gain full university status and become the university of today – a dynamic, ambitious university with aound 2,000 staff and over 12,000 students, of which around 8% are international. It is an independent corporate body established by statute and also an exempt charity for the advancement of education.
The university is led by the Vice Chancellor and CEO, Prof. Nick Petford DL, supported by the Deputy VC Prof. Shân Wareing and COO Terry Neville, who report to the board of governors. The university has three main divisions – called faculties – running the degree programmes, each headed by a Dean:
Faculty of Business & Law: Dean Karen Jones LLB
Faculty of Arts, Science & Technology: Dean John Sinclair
Faculty of Health, Education & Society: Dean Dr Jacob Saranga
There are also Deans for Academic Partnerships (Prof. Hastings McKenzie) and for Research, Impact and Innovation (Dr Cathy Smith). The Deans are supported by six Professional Services directorates: Student & Academic Services; Estates & Campus Services; Library & Learning Services; Enterprise & Employability; HR, Marketing & International Relations; and Finance
The university, which moved to the Waterside Campus in 2018, prides itself on its success in widening participation for students from disadvantaged backgrounds and is ranked 27th in the world for tackling inequality. It has a Gold ranking in the Government’s Teaching Excellence Framework, who cited: “Based on the evidence available, the TEF Panel judged that the University of Northampton delivers consistently outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for its students.”
The university is one of just 40 prestigious institutions globally, and one of only two in the UK, that are recognised as an Ashoka Changemaker Campus for its leading work in social innovation.
Whilst each faculty has its own research specialisms, whereby academic staff voluntarily come together in research ‘centres’, the university also hosts four stand-alone research institutes with full-time dedicated staff, as follows:
Institute for Social Innovation & Impact
ISII evaluates and measures social impact around the world, as well as exploring the financing and policy support for social innovation. ISII defines social impact as ‘the economic, social and environmental benefits delivered by an organisation to society’, viewing social innovation as anything that enhances society’s resources and cohesion. ISII’s work focuses on: supporting social innovators; multi-disciplinary research projects; and social impact evaluation.
Learning & Teaching Enhancement
LTE’s mission is to enable transformational learning experiences through inspirational teaching, achieved by developing capability in learning design, innovation and excellent teaching practice, underpinned by the latest research. LTE’s vision is that learners are resourceful, ethical problem solvers and that graduates are socially responsible and highly employable global citizens – Changemakers of the future. LTE brings together Library & Learning Services with Learning Technology, with a change of emphasis that celebrates diversity and inclusion.
Institute for Public Safety, Crime & Justice
The core mission of IPSCJ is to support evidence-based policy and practice change for the benefit of society. It sits between practice, policy, and academia to enhance public service delivery and outcomes for service users. IPSCJ collaborates with partners worldwide to address key global challenges, with research in five main areas: health and justice; citizens in policing; children and young people; organisational development; and equality, vulnerability and inclusion.
Institute for Creative Leather Technologies
ICLT is a world-leading research and education centre attracting students and researchers from around the globe. Its research is at the forefront of developments in the scientific and technological requirements of the automotive, fashion, footwear and allied leather industries. State-of-the-art facilities at Waterside Campus make Northampton the only European university with a working tannery. This unique resource can support research projects for local businesses. The facilities include a tannery; analytical laboratories eg chromatography, thermal analysis suite; a physical and chemical testing laboratory and a microscopy suite.
The university welcomes involvement by employers and other external stakeholders in every aspect of its academic and research life – and so is keen to hear from local organisations. One of the university’s strategic goals is to make Northamptonshire the best county to start, build and run a business.
For more information contact:
To find out more about any of the above, contact Adrian via
Adrian.Pryce@northampton.ac.uk or call 07720 297402