This side of the pond, too
Years ago, I was a department head at a midwest USA university. Somebody high in the food chain decided the university ought to be good for something practical. Big meeting with 20+ administrators and it turned out preparing students for MCSE certification was going to be it. Yes, it hurt my head then, too. Two staff members (not faculty) and I were assigned to develop the curriculum and the process.
We spent considerable time and effort, plus the hourly pay for the two staff members, and made some progress. (Being a faculty member and an administrator, my time was presumed to have no dollar value.) Then the fellow who was following the updates from MS told us the exam was being discontinued in a few months. It would be replaced by something whose content had not yet been identified. Awshit, WTF, and that sort of thing. Being much younger, we didn't know this sort of thing happened.
The vice president who made the assignment was not noted for being sympathetic with subordinates' problems. We documented our efforts and the new information as well as we could, then got an appointment with the dean. Showed him our efforts and he did the awshit and WTF thing, too. He called for an appointment with the vice president and we got in that day. I had the information ready and explained it, expecting really bad things. In quite a surprise, the VP said sounded like a moving target not worth chasing and we should just shut it down.