1. OUCS within the new Divisional Structure
In the division-based governance structure of the University, OUCS is a part of the Academic Services and University Collections (ASUC) division, along with other central services such as the Libraries and Museums. The University Committee to which OUCS reports is the Information and Communications Technology Committee (ICTC), which has representation from all the academic divisions and is chaired by Pro-Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Slack. As a centrally-funded service, OUCS has a clear responsibility to ensure its services are equally available across the divisions, and that the needs of all divisions are equally reflected in what we provide. It is in this cross-divisional context above all that OUCS has sought to clarify its mission.
Divisionalization has also brought about a welcome transparency in the finances and activities of the centrally funded bodies. OUCS has long been in the vanguard of this move towards clarity and responsibility in monitoring and reporting on the costs of its services. This may be one reason why staff at OUCS have been quick to recognise the good sense in rethinking service provision explicitly along cross-divisional lines. Finding a proper balance between centralized and distributed provision in an increasingly networked world is never an easy task: the University's clear policy directives have helped us identify precisely how our services should be prioritized, so as to ensure a proper level of support for the computer and information technology that now underpins all University activities. We do not need to rehearse here how vital a contribution is made to the University's position and world-class status by a reliable computing infrastructure and its associated range of support services.