University Secretary, Tony Strike, elected to the Executive Committee of the European Higher Education Society

Tony StrikeDr Tony Strike, our University Secretary, has been elected to the Executive Committee of EAIR - the European Higher Education Society, linking research, policy and practice.

EAIR is an international association of academics and professionals from 50 countries who explore the relationship between research, policy and practice in Higher Education. Tony will sit on the Executive Committee for a minimum term of three years.

Dr Tony Strike said:

“When I arrived in Sheffield I started a Higher Education Policy Network with Professor Gareth Parry, for anyone in the University to engage with the intellectual, professional and public debates about topical policy issues in higher education. EAIR has this same concept but on a European scale.

“I am an avid supporter of its aim to bring academics and practitioners together so our practice is informed by the latest research into the problems and challenges faced by higher education, at institutional, national and international levels.”

Vassiliki Papatsiba, Senior Lecturer in Higher Education and Director of the Centre for the Study of Higher Education in the School of Education, said of Tony’s election:

“This sends a strong signal about the intentions and will of colleagues and institutions to carry on collaborating despite Brexit-related uncertainties. Being proactive in order to maintain links and forge new ones is what we can do to play our part.”

The EAIR Executive Committee consists of nine members chosen by membership ballot and who serve for three years. The newly elected members take office at the Annual Forum, this year in Budapest at the end of August. Tony is already a member of HUMANE, the Heads of University Management & Administration Network in Europe.

Tony will present a paper at the EAIR Forum in Hungary, with Syrian colleague Dr Moaed Al Meselmani, on the experiences of forcibly displaced academics and why those academic refugee voices might be missing from debate about the transnational policies and practices intended to assist them.

Tony said:

"As part of a team led by Gill Valentine I took part in the University of Sheffield’s Big Walk in 2016, covering 120 miles over six days along the Trans Pennine Trail in support of academic refugees. I quickly realised the problems caused by forced displacement do not end in finding a place of safety in a foreign land and a more coordinated policy response was needed which responded to the needs of those affected."

Tony contributed chapters to two EAIR books before co-editing the 2017 book titled ‘Collaboration, Communities and Competition: international perspectives from the academy’, Sense Publishers. This book asks whether collaboration and partnership can emerge as an antidote to the consumerist and competitive approaches taken by governments toward regulating their national higher education systems.

He was the editor of ‘Higher Education Strategy and Planning: a professional guide’ published in 2017 by Routledge and is currently a member of the HESPA (Higher Education Strategic Planners Association) National Executive Committee.

Tony is currently co-editing with John Rushforth, Executive Secretary of the CUC (Committee of University Chairs) and Jonathan Nicholls, Secretary at the Open University and member of Council at Sheffield, a book entitled ‘Higher Education Governance in a Changing Global Environment: a comparative study.’ Related to this, in September, Tony will be speaking at a joint national HEPI (Higher Education Policy Institute) and AdvanceHE event about university governance in the new age of regulation and the issues with which governing bodies may well need to grapple.

Higher Education Policy Network (HEPN)

HEPN runs a series of seminars with invited speakers and network meetings, to encourage intellectual, professional and public debates about topical policy issues in higher education.

The next HEPN event will be on 19 September on the Biomedical Bubble: why UK research and innovation needs a greater diversity of priorities, politics, places and people, with a panel, which will include Professors Richard Jones and James Wilsdon, from the University.

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