Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
A Vice-Chancellor (commonly called the VC) of a university in the United Kingdom, other Commonwealth countries, and some universities in Hong Kong, is the de facto head of the university. Strictly speaking, he is only the deputy to the Chancellor of the university, but the Chancellor is usually a prominent public figure who acts as a ceremonial figurehead only (e.g. the Chancellor of Cambridge University is HRH The Duke of Edinburgh), while the Vice-Chancellor acts as the day-to-day chief executive. An assistant to a Vice-Chancellor is called a Pro-Vice-Chancellor - these are usually teaching academics who take on additional responsibilities. Some universities also have a full-time Deputy Vice-Chancellor.
In the United States, a Vice-Chancellor is an assistant to a Chancellor, who is generally the (actual, not merely ceremonial) head of one campus of a large university which has several campuses. The head of the entire university is the University President (the equivalent of a Commonwealth Vice-Chancellor), the Chancellor is in charge of one campus, and a Vice-Chancellor is one of his chief assistants.
British legal system
The Lord Chancellor's deputy in the Chancery Division of the High Court of Justice is also known as the Vice-Chancellor. As the Lord Chancellor never these days sits as a judge, the Vice-Chancellor is the de facto head of the Division.
German and Austrian politics
In German and Austrian politics, the Vice-Chancellor (Vizekanzler) is the deputy to the Federal Chancellor (the equivalent of a Prime Minister). Especially in a coalition government, this is the most important job after the Chancellor.
- See Vice Chancellor of Germany. The current officehholder is Joschka Fischer (Green Party, since 1998)
- See Vice Chancellor of Austria. The current officehholder is Hubert Gorbach (BZ÷, since 2003).
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