City, University of London drops Sir John Cass name from business school

Business School

The City, University of London’s business school has been renamed ahead of the 2021/22 academic year following last summer’s protests over Sir John Cass’ links to slave trade.

The school will now be known as Bayes Business School, dropping the moniker that previously paid homage to Sir John Cass.

Bosses said nationwide protests, which flagged Sir John Cass’s own involvement in the slave trade, made the school, and its stakeholders, reflect on whether such a link was consistent with the school’s values.

The decision to select Bayes as the new name followed a consultation process carried out with staff, students, alumni and partners.

Thomas Bayes was a theologian and mathematician who is best known for Bayes’ Theorem, which suggests that we get closer to the truth by constantly updating our beliefs in proportion to the weight of new evidence. It is this idea that is the motivation behind adopting this name.

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Alongside the new name, Bayes Business School says it is addressing inequality and participation more widely.

Two thousand new students will undertake inclusive teamworking workshops as part of their induction.

A complete curriculum review is underway to embed ethical and socially responsible values throughout, to ensure that Bayes educates professionals and business leaders who work towards building an equitable and sustainable future.

Bayes has also instituted a scholarship programme for Black UK-domiciled undergraduate students to widen participation. This will cover all tuition fees along with an annual stipend for ten students from the start of the 2022/23 academic year.

Professor Paolo Volpin, Dean, Bayes Business School, said: “Inspired by Thomas Bayes’ ideas, our approach as Bayes Business School will be to have the courage to do things differently.

“As a community, we will nurture diversity to stimulate new perspectives and learn from each other. On education, we will focus on teaching our students how to think rather than what to think.

“In our research, we will explore imaginative new angles, asking difficult questions to produce research that has ground-breaking impact on business, society and the environment.

“In essence we will be always curious, always bold and always learning.”

Professor Anthony Finkelstein, President of City, University of London, added: “I am incredibly proud of the staff, students and alumni who have championed our collective values and have made a difficult change – exercising patience, sound judgment and practical sense. I would expect no less, but it is great to see.

“Now we enter into the next phase of development of the Business School which will involve a deepening engagement with practice, the City of London and its professions, infused with the imagination and creative energy of Shoreditch and Clerkenwell.

“As an institution, City is committed to seeing Bayes reinforce its position as a distinctive globally leading Business School.”

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