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


In recent years, HEPI has produced around 20 reports a year. They are all available free of charge here on our website and are generally also available in hard copy from the HEPI office. (The version on the website should be regarded as the version of record.)

  • Why University Governors Should Do More to Protect Academic Quality

    14 July 2022 by Dr Alex Bols

    A new report from the Higher Education Policy Institute, Why it is time for university governors to do more on academic quality (HEPI Policy Note 36), notes the growing responsibility that boards of higher education institutions have on issues of academic quality. The report, which focuses mainly on England, calls on governors…

  • Gypsies, Roma and Travellers: The ethnic minorities most excluded from UK education

    7 July 2022 by Dr Laura Brassington

    Gypsies, Roma and Travellers (GRT) are the lowest achieving ethnic groupings in the UK education system, with stark disparities in attainment apparent from early years education through to higher education. This new report looks at the reasons behind poor educational outcomes; considers the issues faced by GRT students in higher…

  • Digging in? The changing tenure of UK vice-chancellors

    26 May 2022 by Nick Hillman

    The Higher Education Policy Institute (, with support from executive search firm GatenbySanderson, has published a new paper on the changing tenure of UK university vice-chancellors over the past half a century.

  • Holding Talent Back? What is next for the future of Level 3?

    28 April 2022

    In this collection, different experts from a range of backgrounds consider the current plan to defund many BTECs and other popular Level 3 Applied General qualifications. Together, the chapters argue this could close off a useful and proven route for students from a wide range of backgrounds, including for those…

  • Defining Quality

    17 March 2022 by Vicki Stott

    A new Policy Note published by the Higher Education Policy Institute and written by the Chief Executive of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (, Vicki Stott, explores what quality means in UK higher education today. The publication marks the start of a year of activities to mark the…

  • Illicit drug use in universities: zero tolerance or harm reduction?

    3 March 2022 by Arda Ozcubukcu and Graham Towl

    In this HEPI Debate Paper, Arda Ozcubukcu and Professor Graham Towl explore how higher education institutions might approach illicit drug use within their student populations, suggesting that a zero-tolerance approach may cause more harm than it prevents as those who need help do not come forward for fear of punishment.…

  • What’s next for national security and research?

    17 February 2022 by Alexis Brown

    A new HEPI report, What’s next for national security and research? by Dr Alexis Brown (HEPI Report 147), reviews what measures are in place to protect UK research from foreign interference, including the new National Security and Investment Act (2021) that came into force on 4 January 2022.  It argues that, while…