Anyway, this is just nicked from a UCEA (employers') press release, so if you disagree, feel free to say why. My italics.
At Essex, the Trots or someone have posted up posters representing the lecturers as Oliver Twist and the Vice-Chancellor as a ruthless workhouse manager: "MORE PAY! I promised you more, but now I say NO!!"
11. During the 1980s and 1990s, declining university funding did not allow for real terms
improvements in academic pay. However, since 2000/01, the sector’s finances have
started to improve. New pay negotiating machinery was introduced at the same time
and average earnings for academic staff have increased by 20.3% since 2001. Over
the same period, the unit of funding per student (representing the income universities
and colleges of higher education get per student they teach) has increased by just
12. In real terms (deflated by the RPI), since 2001 the pay of higher education teaching
professionals has increased by 8.7% compared with 3.9% for all employees, and 6.2%
for all professional occupations.
13. According to the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the average annual earnings of
full-time ‘higher education teaching professionals’ were £40,657 in 2005, placing
academics in the top 20% of earners in the UK. That compares with national average
earnings of £28,210 for all full-time employees, and £36,894 for all professional
Employers also contribute additional sums – equivalent to 14% of salaries – to
generous final salary pension schemes.
I though point 13 in particular might provide a little context.