Briefings & Evidence

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Response to Lord Stern’s review of the Research Excellence Framework

We have responded to Lord Stern’s review of the Research Excellence Framework (REF), the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The review poses nine questions in relation to aspects of the REF process including on the allocation of quality-related research funding (QR in England and the Research Excellence Grant,…

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Stage 3 of HE Governance Bill – briefing for MSPs on amendments

This briefing paper summaries our position on each of the amendments to the Higher Education Governance (Scotland) Bill at Stage 3. Our primary concern is to ensure that the Bill, as passed, represents a workable model of governance for Scotland’s 18 high-performing higher education institutions. We offer this brief without prejudice to our members’ strong…

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‘Making It Happen’ Policy Forum: Creating an Entrepreneurial Culture in Scottish HEIs

Universities Scotland’s Researcher Training Sub-Committee organised a ‘Making It Happen’ Policy Forum meeting on Monday 18 January to discuss developing an entrepreneurial culture in Scottish higher education institutions (HEIs) for researchers of all career stages. The meeting follows on from the publication of Making It Happen, which explores universities’ three-fold role in entrepreneurship. This meeting brought together representatives…

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Sir Pete Downes letter to Education Secretary on the Higher Education Governance Bill

Universities Scotland’s Convener, Professor Sir Pete Downes, written a letter to the Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning, Angela Constance to set out the sector’s view on issues relating to the Scottish Government’s proposed Stage 2 amendments to its Higher Education Governance (Scotland) Bill. Sir Pete explains that Universities Scotland remains concerned that this…

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Stage 2 of HE Governance Bill – briefing for Education Committee scrutiny of amendments

This paper summaries our position on each of the stage two amendments and summarises the sector’s remaining concerns with the Bill. The brief outlines recent, significant, progress to achieve gender balance within the role of Chair and among lay members of the governing body. By autumn 2016 we will have achieved 50:50 gender balance across…

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Further evidence provided to the Devolution (Further Powers) Committee on post-study work

The Scottish Parliament’s Devolution (Further Powers) Committee held an oral evidence session on post-study work visas on 28 January. Following this session we were asked to provide further evidence to inform a short report the Committee intends to produce on the issue. We provided two further pieces of evidence:   An estimation of the economic…

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Written evidence for Devolution (Further Powers) Committee evidence session on post-study work

Universities Scotland submitted written evidence to the Devolution (Further Powers) Committee as it considers post-study work visas as an issue related to the Smith Commission on Thursday 28 January. Our written evidence makes it clear that Scotland’s higher education institutions want to see a change to the UK’s immigration policy for international students. This could…

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Response to UK Government’s Green Paper, Higher education: teaching excellence, social mobility and student choice

Universities Scotland has responded to the consultation on the the UK Government’s Higher Education Green Paper, Fulfilling our potential: teaching excellence, social mobility and student choice. The response addresses those consultation questions where there are particular implications for the sector in Scotland. Given that many of the proposals in the Green Paper will have direct…

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Brief for the Higher Education Governance (Scotland) Bill Stage 1 debate

Universities Scotland has provided a briefing to MSPs ahead of the Stage 1 debate on the Scottish Government’s Higher Education Governance (Scotland) Bill on Thursday, 14 January. The briefing asks for MSPs’ support at Stage 1 on four areas relating to the Bill:   To acknowledge the existing strengths in Scotland’s system of higher education…

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Briefing for Scottish Government debate on Delivering a World-Class Education System

Universities Scotland has provided MSPs with a short briefing ahead of a Scottish Government debate on Delivering a World-Class Education System on Tuesday 12 January. In summary:   Scotland’s higher education institutions, both old and new, perform exceptionally well on the world stage in their teaching and research. We have pioneered new approaches to teaching…

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