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1. UKADIA Annual Conference A Dangerous Experiment Putting At Risk Universities and Creative Education? Peter Scott Professor of Higher Education Studies.

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Presentation on theme: "1. UKADIA Annual Conference A Dangerous Experiment Putting At Risk Universities and Creative Education? Peter Scott Professor of Higher Education Studies."— Presentation transcript:

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2 UKADIA Annual Conference A Dangerous Experiment Putting At Risk Universities and Creative Education? Peter Scott Professor of Higher Education Studies Centre for Higher Education Studies

3 Plan of talk 1.‘The past is a foreign country’ >>> ‘New Order’ 2.Two questions: all change or no / limited change? 3.Continuity, rupture or contingency: three theories 4.Knowns, known-unknowns and unknown-unknowns: intended and unintended consequences 5.What next? 3

4 ‘The past is a foreign country’ Rapid growth – 50% since 2000 (Home / EU), 40% (international) Generous public spending (with fee income ‘additional’) – but 20% below OECD average Block grants to HEIs (although identifiable T and R streams) Price groups based on relative cost not policy preferences Student numbers controlled – but within tolerance bands Additional Student Numbers awarded through bidding Limited top-down ‘steering’ (HEFCE a planning body) 4

5 The Government’s reform package  End of student growth – blip or trend?  Tuition fees major source of T funding  Substitution rather than additionality  …but all HE funding increasing (unsustainable in longer term = post-SR/2015 cuts?)  No more block grant (STEM/SIVS, QR, initiatives)  Multi-tier SNCs – AAB/ABB; core + margin; others  Regulators jostling for position / HEFCE as eminence grise  Consumers and markets: KIS, marketing and branding 5

6 Two key questions  Are the Government’s funding reforms the culmination of a long-term trend towards ‘cost sharing’, i.e. fees – or do they represent a ‘paradigm shift’?  Will they lead to a ‘Brave New World’ – or, after a turbulent transition, will ‘normal service’ be resumed (‘Things must change so that things can stay the same’ – Lampedusa The Leopard)? 6

7 The ‘culmination’ theory Maintenance grants scrapped for most students in early 1990s Fees (re)introduced after Dearing Report (£1K) Fees tripled by Charles Clarke in 2004 – but OFFA established Browne report recommends end to cap – but also ‘tax’ on fees of more than £6K Government imposes £6K-9K cap – but eases repayment 7

8 The ‘paradigm’ theory  ‘Fee income no longer ‘additional’ – deep cuts in T funding (‘shadow of the deficit’)  No (direct) public funding for arts / social science students  ‘Free market’ in AAB/ABB students – but tough SNC for rest  ‘Core & margin’ experiment to favour low-fee institutions  Opening floodgates to private providers 8

9 … and the ‘contingency’ theory  Liberal Democrat pressure >>> generous repayments (unsustainable funding regime?)  Pricing up to the cap = higher-than-expected fees  Random effects of (multiple) fee caps  Steady-state / declining student numbers (Browne package designed to fund growth)  Managed market = flawed market?  Shying away from legislation = regulatory vacuum 9

10 Knowns ‘Race to top’ in fees / ‘branding’ not ‘market’ strategies Admissions down by 13% in 2012 (flow-through = shrinkage?) Variable (random?) pattern of shortfall among HEIs ‘Recovery’ in 2013 applications (but well below 2011 level) Decreasing number of young adults (except in London / SE) Low-fee ‘margin’ cut in half – formulaic not competitive ‘Top’ student pool enlarged (AAB >>> ABB) Slow arrival of private providers 10

11 Known-unknowns  Generous repayment regime = (a) continuing high levels of ‘public’ subsidy; (b) reduced price sensitivity  Postgraduate time-bomb (access/equity and demand)  ‘Top’ universities most dependent on public funding (QR, STEM/SIVS)  Higher fees for part-time students – despite loans  Chilling effect of UKBA on international recruitment  REF ‘joker’ – like or unlike RAE / more or less concentration  HE funding / reform ‘toxic’ – for all political parties 11

12 Unknown-unknowns  Impact of prolonged recession on student aspirations (applications)  Insatiable appetite for ‘graduate’ cultural capital / irresistible rise of ‘expert’ class  Unsustainable funding system = deep post-SR / post- election cuts or retreat from neo-liberal economic policies  Global challenges to West’s hegemony of higher education (decline / fall of ‘Anglophonia’)  Muddling through / institutional resilience 12

13 Challenges for art & design HEIs  Challenges (opportunities?) of ‘critical mass’  Limited capacity for cross-subsidy  Multi-faculty ‘universities’ v. art ‘schools’  Threats of restructuring: mergers and acquisitions  Balancing ‘craft’ with ‘critique’ (and the academic)  Intellectualism – and research  Elitism, access and fees 13

14 Prospects for creative education CREATIVE & CULTURAL INDUSTRIES Decline of manufacturing / collapse of financial services / fragility of consumption / destruction of public services – creative & cultural industries move centre-stage RISE OF THE CREATIVE CLASSES ‘Clever Cities’, new social movements, new technologies (and cultures), alternative agendas... 14

15 Conclusions WHAT MIGHT HAPPEN  Muddling through to 2015 – and beyond  Political denial / running out of options  Restricting / cutting student numbers  Apres moi le deluge (cutting into the bone) WHAT SHOULD HAPPEN HE as critic (alternatives to neo-liberalism) – not victim (of regulation / cuts) Winning hearts-and-minds (reaching beyond Westminster / Whitehall) 15


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