The SU launched a mass email drive last week with the aim of convincing Regent House members to vote against the proposalLouis Ashworth/VARSITY

Regent House members have voted against a Grace to establish an Endowment Fund Supervisory Body (EFSB), 598 votes to 374.

The proposed establishment of the EFSB raised concerns that it threatened to remove the University Council’s oversight of the Cambridge University Endowment Fund (CUEF), which would have reduced the influence that students and staff have over the University’s investments.

The vote on the Grace took place between April 19th and 29th, with 972 Regent House members taking part in the ballot.

Under the proposed reforms the EFSB, planned to be made up of 20 elected student and staff, would replace Cambridge Investment Management Ltd (CIML) as the corporate trustee, and, if passed, the body would have been given “the power to set the investment objectives, the distribution objective and investment principles for the Cambridge University Endowment Fund.”

Originally proposed in January, concerns were raised by Council member Professor Gay that the EFSB would “leave Council members as mere bystanders.”

Echoing concerns that “staff and students will lose access to the democratic channels,” the Cambridge Students’ Union (SU) and Zero Carbon Society have held two email drives in recent weeks, during which approximately 75 participants emailed members of Regent House persuading them to vote against the proposal.


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The SU also called for “as many academics as possible to vote in the ballot and reject the proposal to establish an Endowment Fund Supervisory Body. As this is a proposal that will detrimentally reduce the accountability of the CUEF to university members, we believe that university members should have their say about whether they think it should be implemented.”

Prior to the vote taking place, a University spokesperson told Varsity: “It is misleading to suggest that the creation of the EFSB diminishes any of the University’s existing control over its investments in the CUEF. It does not.”

They continued: “The new supervisory body simply enables effective management of conflicts of interest arising as a result of the University being both majority investor and corporate trustee, and its establishment brings management of the Fund squarely into line with current Financial Conduct Authority rules governing the fair treatment of all investors in funds which manage assets for multiple investors.”