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What do universities need to prevent a Brexodus?

The Russell Group’s Hollie Chandler outlines the outstanding questions for universities and their staff and students resulting from the government’s initial proposals for EU nationals’ ongoing rights in the UK.

Ministers must stop spreading bogus news about bogus colleges

The government regularly claims that it has cracked down on hundreds of ‘bogus colleges’ offering student visas, but is that really the case? Mike Ratcliffe has looked into who really has been coming on and off the Tier 4 register.

What the TEF is going on in the Lords?

Is the TEF dead? Probably not, but the Lords may be about to force another ministerial compromise on its finer points. David Morris looks at some of the options available.

UKIP on HE today is less nostalgic but still dangerous

As UKIP publish Opening the British Mind – their most detailed paper on higher education yet – longstanding watcher of UKIP HE policy Tom Bailey returns to scrutinise the latest offering from the eurosceptic party.

Rigging the game: imagining a two-tier visa system

With the government likely to propose creating different tiers for universities in international recruitment, David Morris looks at the different ways that this could be implemented, equitable or not.

What next for universities after one hundred days of May?

After Theresa May marks one hundred days in office, the new government’s agenda is becoming clearer every day. Alistair Jarvis unpicks the last turbulent few months and asks what the next period might bring for the sector.

Liberal-minded students could swing the EU vote

Analysis of students’ voting preferences attitudes confirms what many of us already know: the student vote will be vital to Remain’s chances of success in the EU referendum. Adam Wright shows how.

Growing concerns over blueprint for UKRI and research

There are growing grumbles about UKRI and the Higher Education and Research Bill’s proposals for the research landscape. James Wilsdon unpicks the concerns and grumbles and sets out how they might influence the debate as Parliament gears up for the debate.

Spending review: the unthinkable predictions

Returning to his ‘unthinkable’ work from December 2014, Julian Gravatt compares the worst predictions to the realities of the Spending Review and finds a mixed bag, with things not being nearly bad as it might have been, but still with plenty of uncertainty and possible pain to come.

Spending Review: there may be trouble ahead

Martin McQuillan looks at the Chancellor’s plan for spending over the next five years and the potential pitfalls that might be on the horizon. As any university finance director knows, the further the prediction made, the greater the risk of disruption to the plan.

Parliamentary scrutiny

As the new Business, Innovation and Skills Committee launches an inquiry in Parliament in to the quality assessment system, Hugh Jones takes a look at who the new members of the committee are, and what they’re looking to understand with the newly launched inquiry.

Priorities for the new BIS team

After rumours of its demise had been widely circulating, today BIS finds itself in an unexpectedly strong position, with a fresh ministerial team made up of high profile and influential MPs within this majority Conservative administration. Jonathan Simons looks at their priorities for HE, science, FE and skills.

General Election: what next for universities?

The UK wakes up this morning to a defacto Conservative majority, leaving decimation amongst the Liberal Democrats and Labour Party. But what happens now for our universities?

Together in electric dreams

Now more than ten years after the dismantling of the UK’s e-University, Alice Bell revisits the much-maligned project and its notable place in the recent history of higher education and e-learning. With politicians and funders increasingly keen on e-learning, and a whiff of tech-utopianism still in the air, what can we learn from the story of the HE sector’s most high-profile dot-com bubble failure?

How will universities swing in a hung parliament?

With the election getting closer, but the ultimate result looking as uncertain as ever, Martin McQuillan predicts a confusing five years ahead for higher education. How will the sector respond to a rainbow coalition, perhaps without the mandate to pass primary legislation? And how will universities maintain the stability they crave on a fundamentally unstable landscape?

£6,000 fees: unanswered questions

As the dust settles on the Labour announcement that they would lower fees to £6,000 next year, Julian Gravatt looks in detail at the policy and asks ten questions on funding, regulation and policy that are raised by the promise of lower fees.

Blue skies thinking

After the heat and noise around Labour’s announced £6,000 fee policy, Martin McQuillan continues his monthly series on higher education politics and policy by turning his attention to the Conservative Party – their policies and what life might be like for universities if the Conservatives are returned to power in May.

The £6,000 question

As the shockwaves reverberate, Mark Leach takes a look at the reaction in the press, sector, political parties and in early public opinion to Labour’s plan to lower fees to £6,000.

Labour’s HE funding plan – why raiding my tax break is a good idea

In the run up to Labour’s expected announcement that they will cut fees from £9,000 to £6,000, Graeme Wise looks at the method proposed to pay for it – the controversial cut in pensioner tax relief – and finds a progressive solution that has the added benefit of rolling back the marketisation of the sector and reducing some of the risks associated with the student loans system.

The history of university representation

British universities used to have their own parliamentary constituencies and famous names like Francis Bacon, Issac Newton, William Pitt, W E Gladstone, H G Wells and J B Priestley all stood for election for university seats. Heading in to a fresh General Election, Mike Ratcliffe looks at the history of the relationship between universities and political representation.