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Len Shackleton
22 June 2016
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Three main policy drives – on research, teaching quality and the promotion of social mobility – mean that in recent years, state influence over English universities has grown sharply...
Len Shackleton
18 May 2016
2 comments

The Department of Business Innovation and Skills, which in a sensible world probably wouldn’t be responsible for our universities, has firmed up its earlier proposals and is now pushing ahead...
Kevin Currie-Knight and Steven Horwitz
18 February 2016
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“College students are not customers. That analogy needs to die. It needs to be drowned in the world’s largest bathtub. It needs a George R.R. Martin–esque bloodbath of a...
James Knight
29 January 2016
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There used to be a cap to ensure universities had a limited number of students achieving grades AAB or higher at A-level. When the cap was lifted a few years ago, some higher education commentators...
Peter Ainsworth
10 November 2015
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You don’t have to be a Marxist to believe in historical materialism. The idea that changes in the economic environment drive institutional change is hardly revolutionary. Just as the invention...
Peter Ainsworth
3 July 2015
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Writing in The Times on Wednesday, Jo Johnson, the new Universities Minister, noted the disappointing statistic that almost half of students feel they do not get value for money from university...
Ryan Bourne
24 February 2015
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In an age of big challenges, the general election campaign seems to be throwing up a host of small ideas. The Labour Party is currently quibbling internally over how to finance a policy of cutting...
Len Shackleton
3 September 2012
4 comments

  I hold no brief for London Metropolitan University (LMU), which has been poorly managed for a long time. Nevertheless I feel that the UK Border Agency’s decision to remove its Highly...
Len Shackleton
9 August 2012
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  The UK’s centrally-planned universities could do with a real shake-up, and we need to create new institutional forms if they are to be effective in the future. One way to do this is...
Bruno Prior
18 October 2010
18 comments

The purpose of markets is to discover the clearing price at which supply and demand balance. Demand is not simply what people want, but what they choose to put their scarce resources towards in...
Andres Jonathan Drew
13 October 2010
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Policy inspiration can come from the most unlikely sources. Quebec, a bastion of statist corporatism with a distinctly ineffective, underachieving economic system, looks like the sick man of North...
James Stanfield
20 August 2010
3 comments

It looks like it is going to be another record year for A-level students as an estimated 200,000 are expected to miss out on a university place in 2010, an increase from 150,000 in 2009. This...
Philip Booth
11 February 2010
4 comments

The case for requiring undergraduate students to contribute to the cost of their tuition is now widely accepted. Lifetime earnings premiums of between £100,000 and £200,000 from...
James Stanfield
26 January 2010
5 comments

In the Guardian recently, Michael Arthur and Wendy Piatt, representing the Russell Group of the 20 leading British research-intensive universities, made the following plea: “Our politicians...
James Stanfield
28 August 2009
3 comments

The issue of tuition fees in higher education is again a hot topic and it is unlikely to be resolved in the near future. This is not because it is unimportant for universities. Instead, for...
Len Shackleton
21 July 2009
8 comments

It was a disagreeable experience to hear Dame Suzi Leather, Chair of the Charity Commission, attempting to justify the Commission’s stance on the “public benefit” test for...