The principal of Glasgow University accepted a £23,000 pay rise in the past year - an increase of more than five times the rate of inflation. The 11% increase brings Sir Muir Russell's salary and pensions benefits to some £234,000 a year at a time when the rest of the university's staff have been given increases of just 4%. Last year's university accounts show the level of Sir Muir's remuneration package jumped from £184,000 in 2004-05 to £211,000 in the last financial year - a 15% rise. As part of his pension arrangements from his career in the civil service, Sir Muir, 59, will pocket a one-off payment of £215,000 when he turns 60.
He can also expect to have an annual pension of £65,000 waiting for him at age 65.
The latest increase is likely to make Sir Muir one of the highest-paid principals in the country, depending on the increases enjoyed by other university leaders which have not yet been revealed. Last year, the highest-paid principals in Scotland were Professor Duncan Rice from Aberdeen University (£215,000), Dr Brian Lang from St Andrews (£209,000), and Sir Alan Langlands from Dundee (£202,000).
"There is a growing feeling that universities are being turned into businesses in which the collegiality on which their past successes have depended is abandoned and senior managers are paid inflated salaries to get as much as possible out of their junior employees for as little reward as possible." - Terry Brotherstone, who is president of the lecturers' union UCU Scotland
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