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Our Vice-Chancellor has announced his decision to retire

Vice-Chancellor Sir David Greenaway sitting by his desk

Many of you will have met our Vice Chancellor, Professor Sir David Greenaway at our events, or shaken his hand at graduation, and know of his tireless energy, commitment and dedication in leading our institution. Now, after serving our University for nearly 30 years, he has announced his decision to retire next September.

All of us in the alumni and campaign office have been grateful for his continuous support and enthusiasm for our alumni community. We understand this was not an easy decision to make, as Sir David explains in his own words below:

“I have reached this decision following lengthy discussions with my family over recent months. It has not been taken lightly, and does not reflect any diminishing appetite for or commitment to my job. Far from it. I have the same desire and energy as when I took on the role. But it is time to give more of that energy and commitment back to my family who have supported my 24/7 lifestyle for so long, and without complaint.

By the time I retire, I will have served our University for 30 years, with more than 20 of them as a Member of its Executive: as Pro Vice Chancellor, Acting Vice-Chancellor, and Vice-Chancellor. Despite opportunities to work elsewhere, my sole focus and passion has been Nottingham, and serving for nine years as our University’s leader has been a genuine privilege. 


“Please be assured my energy and commitment will be undiminished over the coming 13 months. I will do everything possible to ensure my successor has the strongest possible platform on which to drive us forward, together with a superb senior management team and an outstanding and inspiring University community.

“In due course there will be a time to write on a more personal level about the marvellous support I have enjoyed. For now, let me simply say ‘Thank you’, and I look forward to continuing to work with you all over the coming 13 months.”

Sir David, who will be 65 on his next birthday, has led the University as Vice-Chancellor since 2008, is a renowned economist, researcher, teacher and academic leader with an international reputation.

He was appointed to the University as a Professor of Economics in 1987 and was subsequently a Dean, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, and founding Director of the Leverhulme Centre for Research on Globalisation and Economic Policy. He was a Member of the Government’s Asia Task Force and Higher Education Task Force. He is Chair of the CASE Europe Board of Trustees, Chair of the Russell Group of Universities, and a Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Nottinghamshire.

As an academic, he continues to lecture on Current Economic Issues to first-year undergraduates in the School of Economics. He is the Co-editor of a leading journal and continues to publish research in the fields of exporting and productivity, cross-border investment, international trade and economic development.

As the Vice-Chancellor, he leads an institution with more than 46,000 students worldwide, 8,000 staff and a turnover in excess of £600 million. The University is a trailblazer in global higher education, as the first foreign university in the world to establish a Sino-Foreign campus in China (2004) and the first British institution to open a fully operational overseas campus, The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus, in 2000.

He was knighted in the 2014 Birthday Honours for services to Higher Education.

Hear more from our Vice-Chancellor 

Alumni Relations

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