Universities Wales responds to Higher Education Green Paper

Statement on the publication of the Higher Education Green Paper in England

In response to the publication of the Green paper in England, Professor Colin Riordan, Chair of Universities Wales and Vice Chancellor of Cardiff University said “Even though the Green Paper published today focuses on funding and regulatory powers relating to higher education in England, it is clear that any changes across the border will have an impact on universities in Wales because of the flows of students and staff across the UK. At a time when we are undergoing Welsh Government reviews on fees and funding and oversight of the university sector, it is crucial that no decisions are taken in Wales before the extent of the changes in England are known so that any consequences can be fully understood and considered. The Green Paper does address matters such as changes to the Research Excellence Framework which could affect Welsh universities directly, and it is important to recognise that any changes to UK-wide bodies, such as the Research Councils for example, will apply equally to universities in Wales even though education is a devolved matter.”   

“The UK higher education sector is recognised around the world for its high quality research, teaching and learning and our universities in Wales make a significant contribution to the Welsh economy. We would ask Welsh ministers to allow sufficient time to evaluate the impact of any decisions made in England before reaching any conclusions regarding Wales. We must work together to ensure that Welsh universities can be highly competitive both within and beyond the UK, and are able to continue to benefit communities and drive the economy across Wales.”