Trinity announces changes to historic Charter to enable governance reforms
Posted on: 24 November 2022
A Supplemental Charter, which updates the University’s existing charters laying out how the University is governed, was approved by the Trinity Board on 7 October 2022 and was formally recognised by the Government on 15 November 2022. The new Supplemental Charter sets out the composition of Trinity’s Board.
This Supplemental Charter was joined to the Founding Charter by Dr Linda Doyle, Provost and the Secretary to the College, John Coman, in the Old Library last week. The Founding Charter of 1592, is part of the Archives of the University and is kept in the Manuscripts & Archives Research Collection in the Library. Along with other documents of historical importance in our collection, it is regularly referred to by historians and other researchers. Due to its size, the fact it is written on vellum, and because of its large but fragile wax seal, it requires particular care. It has been conserved in a custom-designed, protective case made in the Department of Conservation and Preservation, and is stored under controlled environmental conditions.
Further information on the Charters is available here https://www.tcd.ie/Secretary/corporate/legal-faq/ and further information on the conservation work of the Library is available here.
The decision to reform Trinity’s governance structures follows a period of consultation on reform of the Board and governance structures and an internal report in 2021 by the University’s Board Review Working Group. Trinity will now begin to institute those reforms along with the reforms required by new legislation to reform university governance across the sector under the Higher Education Authority Act, 2022.
Provost Linda Doyle said:
“I want to thank the College community for their engagement in working on this Supplemental Charter. I want to particularly thank John Coman and Neville Cox who both played a large role in this work. I also want to acknowledge the fact that the Government and Minister Harris recognised Trinity’s unique governance structures in the HEA Act 2022, as passed by the Oireachtas, and to thank him and his officials for working with us over the past year. In Trinity we cherish our governance structures because they respect the importance of a decision-making process that reflects academic values that have served us well over the years.”
Following a recent consultation process with staff and students, the Trinity Board will now consider the implementation of the changes through incorporation into Trinity’s own Statutes with a view to having the changes in place in 2023.