Since 2017, Professor Peter Scott became Commissioner for Fair Access in Scotland and became an Emeritus Professor of Higher Education at University College London. Prior to this he was the Vice-Chancellor of Kingston University, following on from his role as Pro Vice-Chancellor for External Affairs at the University of Leeds. He was also Professor of Education and Director of the Centre for Policy Studies in Education. Before going to Leeds in 1992, he was for sixteen years Editor of the Times Higher Education Supplement.
He was educated at the University of Oxford where he studied history and at the University of California at Berkeley where he was a visiting scholar at the Graduate School of Public Policy while holding a Harkness Fellowship from the Commonwealth Fund of New York.
He has honorary doctorates from the University of Bath, the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology, the (former) Council for National Academic Awards, Anglia Polytechnic University and Grand Valley State University. He is also a Member of the Academia Europea and of the Academy of Learned Societies for the Social Sciences.
His research interests are the governance and management of universities and colleges, non-standard access to higher education and the links between further and higher education. His most recent books is New Languages and Landscapes of Higher Education (OUP, 2017) and his publications include The Meanings of Mass Higher Education (1995), Governing Universities (1996), the Globalization of Higher Education (1998) and Higher Education Re-formed (2000), University Leadership: The Role of the Chief Executive (2000), Ten Years On: Higher Education in Central and Eastern Europe (2000) and Re-Thinking Science: Knowledge Production in an Age of Uncertainties (2001).