The Business School of City, University of London has been renamed as Bayes Business School ahead of the 2021/22 academic year.
In June 2020, there was increasing awareness of the links between Sir John Cass and the slave trade, which made the School, and its stakeholders, reflect on whether such a link was consistent with the School’s values. The School has decided that, in line with its values and principles, it needs to increase its focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion.
The decision to select Bayes as the new name followed a comprehensive and transparent consultation process, which was 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.
Alongside the new name, Bayes Business School is addressing inequality and participation more widely. For example, over 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 (formerly Cass), 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, said:
“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.”
Ms Julia Palca, Chair of City’s Council, said:
“The decision to rename the Business School marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter and is reflective of the values we hold as a University.
“It is an important part of our ongoing work to address racial inequality across City and we are committed to doing everything we can to ensure that we are a diverse and inclusive place to work and study.”
As part of its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) strategy, Bayes established a Diversity and Inclusion Council in 2020 to lead across all aspects of its DEI work. It has also formed a Racial Equity and Inclusion Advisory Group, comprising students, faculty, professional staff and alumni from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME*) backgrounds, who are working to improve student and staff progression and experience.
Read more about the process that was undertaken to select a new name, and find out further information on the FAQs page.
*At City we currently use the term BAME, as this reflects the way we collect and store staff and student data and it aligns with our reporting obligations and the majority of other Higher Education institutions. We are aware that this term is considered to be problematic and are reviewing our use of language around race and ethnicity.