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


The HEPI Blog aims to make brief, incisive contributions to the higher education policy landscape. It is circulated to our subscribers and published online. We welcome guest submissions, which should follow our Instructions for Blog Authors. Submissions should be sent to our Blog Editor, Josh Freeman, at [email protected].

  • Jo Johnson: Value for Money?

    19 July 2017

    Tomorrow, Jo Johnson (the Minister for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation) is delivering a speech to the Reform think tank on ‘Securing VFM for students in HE’. In plain English, VFM means ‘value-for-money’. So the speech could be ten times more interesting than it may sound. There are a number…

  • How do you create a university for students?

    14 July 2017 by Jon Wakeford

    This guest blog comes from Jon Wakeford, Group Director, Strategy and Corporate Communications, at the University Partnerships Programme (UPP). It was originally presented as a speech at the 2017 HEPI Annual Conference at Regent’s University London on 7 June. With the numerous political and economic upheavals taking place in the UK…

  • Adonis Mark I versus Adonis Mark II

    13 July 2017 by Nick Hillman

    When politicians associated with one particular policy or another change their mind, it is often a reason to cheer. This is because it tends to happen when they recognise some old evidence is correct after all or some new evidence comes to light and they respond to it. In general, our…

  • Being an ombudsman in higher education: a review

    7 July 2017 by Diana Beech

    ‘Ombudsmen in higher education are a growing and distinct cadre’, writes Rob Behrens, Visiting Professor at UCL Institute of Education and Independent Adjudicator and Chief Executive of the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) for Higher Education in England and Wales between 2008 and 2016. It is these eight years…

  • Salary vs. satisfaction: What constitutes good work for graduates?

    30 June 2017 by Diana Beech

    Last week, HEPI hosted a roundtable lunch discussion at the RSA in conjunction with the UPP Foundation, looking at what ‘good work’ means for graduates. Matthew Taylor, Chief Executive of the RSA, was the guest speaker at the event, sharing his thoughts on the Government’s review on modern employment practices,…

  • HEPI Director responds to the Teaching Excellence Framework results

    22 June 2017 by Nick Hillman

    Nick Hillman, Director of the Higher Education Policy Institute, said: ‘The Teaching Excellence Framework would have comprehensively failed if it had simply replicated existing hierarchies. It was always designed to do something different to other league tables and rankings – namely, to show where there are pockets of excellence that…

  • Moving on up? What the Social Mobility Barometer means for UK higher education

    19 June 2017 by Diana Beech

    In January this year, the Secretary of State for Education, Justine Greening, set out the role of education in removing obstacles to social mobility. She proclaimed she wanted ‘to see more disadvantaged young people attending the very best universities, … entering the top professions, and progressing through the most rewarding…

  • What’s on at the Buckingham Festival of Higher Education?

    16 June 2017 by Diana Blamires

    This guest blog comes from the University of Buckingham, where HEPI is hosting two debates at the Festival of Higher Education later this month. The term ‘HE conference’ usually conjures up images of dingy lecture theatres, central London and concrete. Nothing could be more different when it comes to the…

  • HE leavers and the labour market: some lessons from LEO

    15 June 2017 by Diana Beech

    After the trials and tribulations of the past week, the release of the Longitudinal Education Outcomes (LEO) data on Tuesday at least provided the higher education sector with a welcome sense of ‘business as usual’. For those unfamiliar with the LEO data, these are experimental statistics on the employment and…

  • The DUP in power: What it means for UK universities

    12 June 2017 by Diana Beech

    Since the nation woke up on Friday morning to the news of a hung parliament, one party from Northern Ireland has found itself thrust into the limelight as the key to sustaining another Conservative term in office. The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) – Northern Ireland’s largest political party, representing a…