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Women in HE Conference 2021

New to Higher Education Governance

Information and support for new governors and new governance professionals

Higher education governance is multi-faceted combining the oversight of strategy, finance, risk and opportunity as well as academic assurance and regulatory compliance matters from a range of sources, which can be daunting. New governors or governance professionals should be supported to navigate the landscape and understand the activities and culture of their institution.

Aaron Porter
Induction and support for new governors and governance professionals should be a key priority for institutions to help them ensure effective governance in a complex world, but also make the most of their talented board members and staff."

Aaron Porter

Associate Director (Governance)

Advance HE

Are you New to Governance in Higher Education?

The New to Governance in Higher Education information pack contains links to all the resources and content available on this page plus more.

Request a pack
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Guidance to support the induction of new governors

Advance HE has written this guide to support institutions in the induction of new governors or for anyone wanting to understand more about the key elements of being a governor and the governance landscape of higher education.

It is divided into key sections referencing Advance HE resources as well as a number of external documents and websites. It can be printed off and added to a governor induction pack or shared as required.

Download the guide

Governor Development Programme (GDP)

Created in 2005, GDP  is designed to support Governors and governance professionals in all HE institutions throughout the UK with various events held throughout the academic year.

Find out more
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A guide for new clerks and secretaries of governing bodies of higher education institutions in the UK

This is the second edition of this Guide for governing body clerks either new to HE or new to their role, and updates the first edition produced in 2008. Its specific purposes are: to provide information on the role and responsibilities of the clerk; to identify a basic range of good practice in crucial areas; and to give guidance to clerks on the effectiveness of governance and how it can be enhanced.

Download the guide

Governance Professionals in HE Programme

A development programme specifically designed for clerks, secretaries and staff in governance related roles in professional support teams who play a central role in the academic and corporate governance of HE institutions.

Find out more
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Reports, publications and resources to support those New to Higher Education Governance

The following resources have been designed to support those new to higher education governance or those responsible for inducting those becoming governors at a higher education institution. The resources cover topics such as operating context, responsibilities and the governing body structure and operation.

A guide to governor responsibilities

The responsibilities of a governor of a higher education provider can be broad and often dynamic. This handy guide covers academic governance, compliance and regulation, commercial operations, students including international students, risk management, the strategic plan and monitoring performance. Download the guide.

A guide to operating context

The aspects of the operating context for higher education providers are considered in this guide which covers legal requirements and regulation, ethics and values and competitive pressures. Download the guide.

More resources, reports and publications

You will find links to more resources, reports and publications in our information pack on supporting governor, chair and clerk development in higher education.

Request a pack

A guide to governing bodies

The composition of a governing body, the role of committees and effectiveness, as well as the detailed work of the individual committees, is reviewed in this guide to governing bodies. Download the guide.

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Governor Development Programme (GDP)

GDP is a long-running national portfolio designed to support Governors, board members and professionals from all HE providers across the UK. With over 800 participants each year, GDP provides an opportunity for Governors to hear from sector experts, to network with peers from other institutions and to explore in detail key issues impacting the sector and institutions.

The portfolio is designed to support all Governors, including Student and Staff Governors, board Chairs and those with oversight for governance of HE providers.

Events in the GDP programme are  tailored to the policy landscape and the distinct circumstances in each home nation and benefits institutions through better informed and equipped Governors and supports:

  • Individuals thinking about joining a governing body;
  • Induction and orientation;
  • Developing the effective skills for those on the board; and
  • More tailored support for more experienced Governors.
Find out more about the Governor Development Programme
Governance event
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