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


  • Extract from a speech to the Open University

    9 July 2014 by Nick Hillman

    Introduction Thank you for inviting me. HEPI is the UK’s only specialist think-tank on higher education: we are independent, non-partisan and a registered charity. Our goal is to shape the higher education debate for the better, with research. Or, to put it another way, using evidence to help politicians resist…

  • Fancy a 76000% tax rate?

    18 June 2014 by Nick Hillman

    Back in April, HEPI produced two publications comparing the English and Australian student loan systems. Today, we were lucky enough to host a seminar with Professor Bruce Chapman (often described as the architect of the Australian loans system), jointly with the University Alliance and Royal Holloway. One issue that came up is…

  • Let’s hear it for university admissions staff

    10 June 2014

    New research published by the Department for Education has recommended that universities operating contextualised admissions should treat selective and non-selective state schools differently. It is an important contribution to the debate on school type versus school performance. Earlier this year, some people wondered if the battle was over when HEFCE said…

  • Speech to Policy Exchange Education Conference, 7th June 2014

    7 June 2014 by Nick Hillman

      Higher education policy doesn’t stop at the weekend in think-tank land, at least not when there’s less than a year to a general election. So Policy Exchange hosted an event today looking ahead to the educational policies that might be presented to the electorate in 2015 – see #PXed2015…

  • Why are PhDs so rarely publishable?

    6 June 2014 by Nick Hillman

    This new Debate section of the HEPI website was established partly to bolster HEPI’s evidence base by giving people an opportunity to submit their ideas and partly to provide a new forum to debate topical higher education issues. One question we would love your thoughts on is why are PhDs so rarely publishable in…

  • Grants for all!

    2 June 2014

    The beefed-up Wonkhe website is going from strength to strength at the moment. Recent interesting additions include a piece by Mark Leach on higher education wonks and one by Carl Lygo of BPP University on the true costs of a good higher education experience, which refers to the recent HEPI / HEA Academic Experience Survey…

  • Australia, Germany and students’ perceptions of value-for-money

    16 May 2014

    Yesterday, the Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive of the University of Staffordshire, Professor Michael Gunn, said: “Too many politicians and political advisers look to the US where many students do not complete or default on their loans and to Australia to provide answers to what they hope will be some higher…

  • Nadine Dorries versus the University of Bedfordshire

    15 May 2014

    Nadine Dorries has just tweeted: @NadineDorriesMP: Written to former Labour Minister, now head of Bedfordshire University since 2012 to ask why university has done so badly in league tables It’s an interesting way for an MP to hold a local university to account. It doesn’t seem inherently unreasonable for an…

  • Higher Education and the 2015 general election

    30 April 2014 by Nick Hillman

    In a new book published today by Bright Blue, I argue: that tuition fees are probably here to stay; that higher education is unlikely to be a major election issue in 2015; and that the Coalition should change course on international students. The chapter is written in a personal capacity,…