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The UK's only independent think tank devoted to higher education.

The future HE workforce: the challenges, risks and opportunities

  • 3 June 2010
  • 09:30 - 16:15
  • The Royal Society, London

This event has been cancelled and we are no longer accepting bookings.

In today’s harsh economic climate and with public funding severely constrained, the UK’s HE sector faces a number of challenges to ensure that its world class status is not put at risk.  A key element in driving forward excellence in HE has been the ability of the sector to attract and retain talented staff. But against a backdrop of public funding constraint, pressures will inevitably be placed on HEIs as they attempt to adapt to the new environment. With the publication of HEFCE’s HE Workforce Framework Paper, this conference will bring together senior representatives from the sector to address the key issues:

  1. How can the sector become more flexible at a time of change while maximising the talent and commitment of its people?
  2. How can HE pay and reward remain competitive, adequately rewarding people for their contribution, and equitable, while also being affordable and not threatening the sector’s future financial sustainability?
  3. National pay bargaining has continued to receive broad support across the sector’s employers and trade unions. What is the optimum industrial relations model for the sector to create a real partnership where the sector’s sustainability and success is driven by a motivated, well rewarded and engaged workforce?
  4. How can the sector best support (and subsequently implement) the aims of the Employers’ Pensions Forum to achieve sustainable pensions for the HE workforce in future?
  5. To what extent do the existing contracts and university statutes need to change to optimise performance management, workforce flexibility and to enable institutions to meet the diverse expectations of staff, students and employers?

This conference, organised by the Higher Education Policy Institute, brings together some of those playing a key role in taking decisions on these and related questions.  Speakers include: John Berriman, partner at PwC and member of HEFCE’s HE Workforce Framework Steering Group; Olivia Grant, Chair of Governing Body, Newcastle University; Jocelyn Prudence, Chief Executive of UCEA; Alastair Hunter, President, UCU; Janet Beer, Vice-Chancellor, Oxford Brookes University; Ewart Wooldridge, Chief Executive, Leadership Foundation; Ian Diamond (TBC), Chief Executive, ESRC & Chair, RCUK; David Ruebain, Incoming Chief Executive, Equality Challenge Unit; Christina McAnea, National Secretary, UNISON; Nick Abbott,Partner, Mills & Reeve LLP.

This conference will:

  • Provide an opportunity to examine and discuss with national leaders the challenges facing the HE sector in maintaining and developing a high quality workforce.
  • Enable participants to contribute to the important debate around the future shape and direction of the HE workforce.
  • Provide access to the latest thinking around how to attract, retain and motivate talented staff.
  • Provide a networking opportunity for all those with an interest in HR, performance management, and the overall development of the HE workforce in today’s challenging times.

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