SOAS is not currently run in the interests of the students and staff, who together make up the SOAS community. In the context of the privatisation of higher education, increased tuition fees are being spent on expanding, marketing, branding, bureaucratisation, and outsourced contracts, whilst certain departments are severely underfunded and courses are being cut. Staff has seen a real terms cut and fractional teaching staff (tutors, teaching fellows, and senior teaching fellows) are not paid for the full hours that they work, with many not even being paid the London Living Wage. There are substantial pay gaps for women and BME staff, and significant attainment gaps for women and BME students. The cleaners suffer victimisation and intimidation from their outsourced employer on our campus. The undemocratic nature of SOAS means that staff and student grievances have not been listened to by SOAS management, resulting in strikes, protest and dissatisfaction.
Democratise SOAS aims to change all of this by transforming SOAS’ governance structure; giving academics, students and support staff greater say in how our institution is run. We want greater representation, transparency and accountability - a model of shared governance where everyone has a stake and a say. Join our forums and the campaign to democratise SOAS and ensure it is run in the interests of the entire SOAS community. Keep updated by liking the Democratise SOAS facebook page!