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Dr Lucy Montgomery
03 May 2012
Earlier this week, David Willetts announced the government’s intention to make publically funded research available for free to readers. This announcement comes in the wake of a tumultuous few months for academic publishers. The boycott of journals published by Elsevier, the Wellcome Trust’s decision to adopt more robust Open Access policies in relation to the research that it funds and, internationally, Harvard University’s proclamation that the cost of journal subscriptions has become ‘untenable’ have added to a growing sense of crisis in the publishing community.
28 March 2012
The UK has ‘too many graduates’. This is a sentiment frequently captured in newspaper headlines and widely held by many in the UK. But is it true?
01 March 2012
Last week it emerged that the unemployment rate was 25% for the 21-year-olds leaving university last year, compared to 20% of 18-year-old school leavers. There is a growing feeling amongst the public that widening participation in higher education has led to a proliferation of ‘mickey mouse’ degrees and a corresponding drop in the quality of graduates. In 2010 a YouGov opinion poll found that 52 per cent of respondents agreed with the statement "too many students are going to university now and it's devaluing degrees". Worries over the link between widening participation and a perceived decline in graduate quality are still making headlines, most recently during the debate over the appointment of Les Ebdon as head of the Office for Fair Access. Commentators were quick to deride the nature and quality of courses available at the University of Bedfordshire, where Ebdon is Vice-Chancellor, and to brand his approach to access as a ‘model of mediocrity’. So should we be losing faith in
28 February 2012
We know that our higher education sector is under strain. Complicated caps on student numbers, changes in tuition fees and the ‘impact’ agenda have created a baffling mix of institutional and individual incentives across the sector. In this context Sir Tim Wilson today published his review setting out over 50 recommendations for how to improve university-business collaboration.
03 November 2011
The vital role that universities play in creating economic growth is a huge focus for University Alliance. It is a fact that seems self-evident and yet as Professor Wendy Purcell highlights in our ‘Growing the Future’ publication, “this role is often underplayed, under-utilised and misunderstood.”