This statement is made pursuant to Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 ('the Act'). It aims to inform the University Court, our staff, students and the general public about the steps the University has taken during the last financial year, ending 31 July 2021 in relation to modern slavery and human trafficking.
University of Stirling Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement
Statement for the financial year ending 31 July 2021 Purpose of the Statement
This statement is made pursuant to Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (‘the Act’). It aims to inform the University Court, our staff, students and the general public about the steps the University has taken during the last financial year in relation to modern slavery and human trafficking.
The University is committed to preventing modern slavery and human trafficking from taking place in any part of its own business and in its supply chain.
The University’s compliance to the Modern Slavery Act 2015 is part of the University’s Sustainability Strategy. The Corporate Sustainability Steering Group (CSSG) is chaired by the Deputy Principal (Operational Strategy and External Affairs) who is responsible for the strategic direction of sustainability at the University.
The University is a member of Advanced Procurement for Universities and Colleges Ltd (APUC) and endorses the APUC Supply Chain Code of Conduct (‘the Code’). Use of the Code demonstrates our commitment to ensure that slavery and human trafficking is not taking place within our supply chains.
Every regulated procurement process undertaken by the University requires tenderers to disclose whether they, or any member of their organisation with decision‐making powers, has been convicted in the last five years of any offence under Part 1 of the Human Trafficking and Exploitation (Scotland) Act 2015 or under any provision referred to in the Schedule of the Act. Tenderers that confirm such a conviction are excluded unless they can provide evidence that they have taken sufficient measures to demonstrate compliance with this Act.
The University is committed ‘to engage with the supply chains to ensure continued value, managed performance and minimisation of risk throughout the life of contracts for the benefit of customers and students’. This strategic procurement objective was approved by Court in December 2016. (A revised Procurement Strategy, to support the Addendum to the current Strategic Plan for the period 2021-23, will be published later this year).
The risk of modern slavery occurring in the University’s workforce is mitigated by ensuring that staff are recruited following robust recruitment policies. We are rigorous in checking that all new recruits have the right to work in the UK.
The University of Stirling
Ranked among the UK’s 40 best universities in the Complete University Guide, the University of Stirling is committed to providing education with a purpose and carrying out research which has a positive impact on communities across the globe – addressing real issues, providing solutions and helping to shape society. Stirling is ranked fifth in Scotland and 40th in the UK for research intensity (Research Excellence Framework). Interdisciplinary in its approach, Stirling’s research informs its teaching curriculum and facilitates opportunities for knowledge exchange and collaboration between staff, students, industry partners and the wider community.
The University of Stirling is ranked among the top 20 UK universities for student satisfaction (National Student Survey) and top 10 in the UK for postgraduate student experience (Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey), and has an overall five-star rating in the QS Stars University Ratings.
The University’s scenic central Scotland campus – complete with a loch and castle – is home to more than 14,000 students and 1,700 staff, representing around 120 nationalities. A recent multi-million-pound redevelopment at the heart of campus has delivered modern, flexible, and digitally connected study and social spaces, including enhanced student
support and retail and catering outlets.
The University has twice been recognised with a Queen's Anniversary Prize – the first for its Institute for Social Marketing and Health (2014) and the second for its Institute of Aquaculture (2019). Stirling is Scotland's University for Sporting Excellence and its recently redeveloped world-class facilities provide the perfect training environment for the University’s sports scholars – many of whom compete at the highest level, including at the Olympics and Commonwealth Games – and for students, staff, and the wider community.
As a signatory to the £214 million Stirling and Clackmannanshire City Region Deal, the University is driving productivity and inclusive growth across the Forth Valley, and beyond.
Through pioneering collaborative solutions to global challenges, researchers are putting innovation, skills, and partnership at the heart of a sustainable economic recovery.
Overview for Financial Year ending 31 July 2021
The University adopted the APUC Supply Chain Code of Conduct in all its regulated procurements.
Sustainability considerations were addressed in all regulated procurements (over and above adherence to the Code).
Procurement staff successfully completed the Higher Education Procurement Association (HEPA) ‘A Guide to Modern Slavery’ and the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply
(CIPS) ‘Ethical Procurement and Supply’ e-learning modules.
In 2020/21 there were no requirements to terminate business with any suppliers on the grounds of contravention of the Modern Slavery Act.
Actions for Financial Year ending 31 July 2022
The University will continue to address modern slavery directly through the use of minimum standards, ‘fit for purpose’ specifications and appropriate contract management.
Category Management Procurement managers will continue to analyse ‘at risk’ supply chains as part of their ongoing category management activity. Additional mitigating measures will be adopted as appropriate.
Best practice will be utilised and sectoral initiatives will be engaged with as appropriate.
APUC’s new Supply Chain Management (SCM) tool will be adopted for use by Procurement Services. Through SCM, suppliers are asked to provide details of measures they take in
relation to modern slavery in their supply chain, including any third-party accreditations and assessments to evidence this.
Members of the Procurement team will continue to access all relevant training opportunities organised by the sector.
Procurement Services will continue to raise awareness of modern slavery and human trafficking issues across the University community – how to identify risks and how to put in
place mitigation or management measures – through its ongoing stakeholder engagement.
The University will continue to support the various ‘live’ cross-sectoral initiatives to address modern slavery risk in supply chains.
Where appropriate, the University will supplement our own efforts with activities already being progressed by APUC. See the APUC Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking
Statement for reference.
The Procurement team continues to have representation on the APUC Sustainable Procurement Leaders Group. The Sustainable Procurement Leaders Group brings together representatives from APUC members, as well as all Heads of Category, to consider all key issues related to sustainable procurement and looks at ways to increase and improve sector awareness.
The University remains an associate member of Electronics Watch (EW), an independent monitoring organisation working to achieve respect for labour rights in the global electronics industry through socially responsible public purchasing in Europe. Appropriate engagement with, and support of EW, will continue. See Electronics Watch for reference.
This statement will be reviewed annually.
Professor Sir Gerry McCormac, Principal and Vice‐Chancellor