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


  • An open letter to the new Director for Fair Access and Participation

    24 November 2021 by Nick Hillman

    Dear John, Congratulations on your new appointment! We don’t know each other well but I have long admired your career from afar. You clearly care passionately about learners and ensuring they meet their potential. It is a huge and brilliant job that you are taking on, in fact one of…

  • Who controls higher education policy?

    23 November 2021 by Nick Hillman

    HEPI Director Nick Hillman delves into the biography of the most important UK civil servant of modern times, Jeremy Heywood, to search out lessons on how higher education policy is set at the centre of Whitehall. During a recent period of COVID-induced isolation, I finally got around to reading What Does…

  • Bringing universities into the 21 Century: supporting onsite teaching with virtual learning

    22 November 2021 by David Latchman

    This blog was contributed by Professor David Latchman, Vice-Chancellor at Birkbeck, University of London. After 18-months of enforced online learning, it is not surprising that most students were keen to return to onsite teaching and the unique opportunities that in-person university life presents. There are good reasons why the in-person model…

  • Fair and appropriate regulation and monitoring

    18 November 2021 by Ashley Wheaton

    Ashley Wheaton (@UCEM_Principal) is Principal of the University College of Estate Management. He has previously held senior roles as Director of Global Learning Services for Microsoft, and Chief Executive Officer of InfoBasis Ltd, a global talent management software company. The issue of regulatory burden is never far from the surface…

  • Who might be England’s new free speech champion?

    16 November 2021 by Nick Hillman

    There are various important roles in English higher education that are either vacant or close to becoming so – for example, in the last few days, we’ve heard that the Chief Executive of the Office for Students will soon stand down and the new Director for Fair Access and Participation…

  • Fair equality of opportunity means a fair chance to succeed

    15 November 2021 by Chris Millward

    This blog was contributed by Chris Millward, Director for Fair Access and Participation at the Office for Students. Next month I will make my final trip to meet staff and students as Director for Fair Access and Participation in England. These visits, punctuated of course by the pandemic, have crossed the…