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


  • Tomorrow is International Women’s Day: how do women fare in HE leadership?

    7 March 2015 by Nick Hillman

    Women are woefully under-represented in UK national life, including in the leadership of our higher education institutions. For example, while there are some outstanding female Vice-Chancellors, they remain the exception rather than the norm. Arguably, the imbalance starts at the very top as the last few people with responsibility for…

  • Quantity doesn’t mean quality: UEA sabbatical officer responds to Professor Acton

    27 February 2015 by Connor Rand

    Our recent collection of essays on where higher education institutions spend their fees and how their strategies have changed since £9,000 fees came in included a chapter by Professor Edward Acton, the former Vice-Chancellor of the University of East Anglia. We are delighted to publish this response, in the form of…

  • A Vice-Chancellor’s election manifesto

    20 February 2015

    The higher education mission groups and representative bodies are in the process of making recommendations for the next Government but each Vice-Chancellor does not typically produce their own manifesto. So HEPI is particularly pleased to host this guest blog by Professor Quintin McKellar, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hertfordshire, in the form of his personal…

  • Tomorrow is University Mental Health Day

    17 February 2015 by Nick HIllman

    Tomorrow – Wednesday, 18th February 2015 – is University Mental Health Day. The 2014 HEPI / HEA Student Academic Experience Survey suggested that, on average, students’ wellbeing may be lower than that for the population as a whole. Last week, the excellent new Student Mental Wellbeing in Higher Education: Good Practice Guide…

  • David Watson

    9 February 2015

    Along with many other people in higher education, we are today mourning the sad loss of Professor Sir David Watson, a prolific author and commentator on higher education, who was the first Vice-Chancellor of the University of Brighton and, more recently, Principal of Green Templeton College, Oxford. Hepi is honoured to have been able…

  • Supporting informed choice in higher education

    30 January 2015

    Louisa Darian from Which?, who partnered with HEPI on the 2013 Academic Experience Survey, writes exclusively for HEPI on how to support people in the midst of choosing what and where to study. We are grateful to Louisa for this guest blog. Next month the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is due…

  • What happened in Australia when they went for different fees for different subjects?

    26 January 2015 by Nick Hillman

    Last week, we featured six questions that need to be addressed by those joining the chorus calling for lower tuition fees for STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) students in England. Differential fees by discipline would be novel for the UK, but (as we explained in a 2014 pamphlet) they have existed for a long…

  • £6k for STEM? Key questions

    21 January 2015 by Nick Hillman

    A new rumour has been sucked into the vacuum where Labour’s student fees policy will eventually be – a lower fee cap (£6k) for STEM undergraduates. Isabel Hardman is an excellent journalist, but I stress I’ve no idea if the party really is seriously considering the policy. UKIP claim the idea…

  • Free access to community college benefits students but not the nation by Donald E. Heller

    17 January 2015

    HEPI generally only publishes exclusive content, but there has been relatively little discussion in the UK of Obama’s new proposals for free two-year community college places. So we have decided as a one-off to reprint this recent article by Donald E. Heller, Dean of the College of Education at Michigan State University. It previously appeared on The…