Higher Education Policy Network (HEPN)

Welcome to the HEPN web pages.  The Network has been created for University staff to engage with the intellectual, professional and public debates about topical policy issues in higher education, through a seminar series with invited speakers and network meetings. 

The Network meets quarterly throughout the year - some meetings include speakers (both internal and external to the University), others may be held on an occasional basis to enable forum members to discuss topical issues.  A members' mailing list has been created to support and engage the network between meetings.  More information about the purpose of the Network can be found in the notes of the first meeting (from the link in the right hand box).

2017 Programme

Wednesday 26 April 2017 – Panel Event: Is social mobility stalling, and what can HE do?
Venue: Inox Suites, Level 5, Students’ Union Building
Chair: Dr Tony Strike, Director of Strategy, Planning and Change

We are pleased to announce that this will be a panel event. The theme will cover social mobility and education and the panel will seek to answer the question:- Is social mobility stalling, and what can HE do? 

The panel will comprise of: Anne-Marie Canning, Director of Widening Participation at King's College London; Emran Mian, director of Strategy and Social Mobility at Department of Education; and Dr Rachel van Duyvenbode, Senior University Teacher in the School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics at the University of Sheffield. Each will offer a different perspective on widening participation and equity in higher education.

Speakers Biographies

Emran Mian

Emran is the Director of Strategy and Social Mobility at the Department for Education. Previously he ran a think tank called the Social Market Foundation; and was the secretary to the independent review of higher education funding (the Browne Review) in 2009-10.

Anne-Marie Canning

Anne-Marie Canning is the Director of Widening Participation at King’s College London. In this role she provides leadership and strategic direction for full lifecycle widening participation across the institution. Anne-Marie is currently leading a project with the Cabinet Office examining whether behavioural insights can improve the experience and outcomes of non-traditional learners at university. Anne-Marie is a member of the Universities UK Ministerial Social Mobility Advisory Group and recently served as Chair of the Russell Group Widening Participation Association.

In 2008 Anne-Marie was appointed as the first full-time Access Officer at University College, Oxford and her work at Univ earned her a University of Oxford Teaching Award. Anne-Marie has a degree in English and Related Literatures from the University of York and served a sabbatical term as the president of the students' union. Anne-Marie has served as a local councillor and is now an associate governor at the Archer Academy. You can follow her on Twitter @amcanning and the work of King’s College London's Widening Participation Department @kclwp.

Dr Rachel van Duyvenbode

Rachel is a Senior University Teacher in the School of English at The University of Sheffield where her research-led teaching focuses on narratives of difference. For the past 3 years, Rachel has directed, designed and facilitated the Sheffield SEED (Seeking Educational Equity & Diversity) Project on Inclusive Curriculum; a peer-led professional development equity and diversity programme which has been recognized nationally for its innovation, impact and sector-leading good practice by ECU, HEA and HEFCE. Rachel has provided consultations to several UK universities (including The University of Oxford, Sheffield Hallam and Edinburgh Napier) as well as travelling recently to Washington DC to share methods and knowledge developed in Sheffield at an international SEED Leader meeting. Her talk will focus on how initiatives like SEED show potential for sustained impact on staff thinking, practice and commitment to educational equity and in turn support the embedding of inclusive practices across the student journey.

Upcoming events

We are currently working on events in June and September and will let you know the dates as soon as they are confirmed.  More information about the events will be added here.

Past Events

We recently hosted David Palfreyman, Bursar and a Fellow of New College, University of Oxford, Vivienne Stern, Director of Universities UK International (UUKi), Professor Peter Scott, Professor of Higher Education Studies at the UCL Institute of Education, Aaron Porter, previous NUS President, Professor Les Ebdon, Director of OFFA, Paul Clark, Chief Executive of the Higher Education Statistics Agency. In 2015 we also hosted Mario Ferelli, Director of Analytical Services at the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and Professor Jayne Mitchell, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Bishop Grosseteste University. The slides for these talks are available in the HEPN Event Archive via the right hand box on this page.

Be the first to hear about our next event by joining the HEPN Mailing list.  To join, please contact Angela.