Video transcript: The value of universities

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Harvinder Kaur: The Office for Students have been setup, because students are paying a lot of money to go to University. It’s not unknown for it tobe 9000 pounds a year, and much bigger focus from students wanting to know how their money is being spent.

Nick Hillman: University funding is really in the news at the moment, because the government setup is to review of postdating educational funding. Which means we are going to have a really big conversation, I think, in the next year, about whether universities offer value for money,what they can do with the limited resources that they have, and how students continue to experience their lives as students.

Ian Looker: We’ve worked with HEPI across the course of the last 12 months to really to bring a debate to the higher education sector. The challenge was to look into the long term, 5 to 10 years’ time, what are the issues that are going to be facing the universities within that time frame. The types of things we’ve talked about have been new technology, and how that will effect universities in the future. It’s been around the internationalisation of higher education, and how that will effect universities. We’ve also looked at the role of leadership and strategy within that. How does the leaders of the universities today lead their institutions into that kind of environment.

Will Day: We are heading into a period where they will need to work out what the new economy looks like, and not train them to run the old economy. I have a real concern, that often like consultancies, we help people to do the wrong thing a little better, when what we really need to do is to understand and do the right thing.

Ian Looker: Value means different things to different people. Universities aren’t just about serving students, they serve broader society. What kind of value do universities add to broader society, particularly in the areas in which they are based, the regions, the cities, the towns in which universities are based?

Sally Jeffrey: Universities also have an important gravity effect in the communities within which they exist. For instance, many innovativeideas would never come to market without the grounding influence of a strong university, and the faculty there that do research and work with innovation to bring those products to market.

Sir Anthony: Seldon Universities are essential for society, for the economy, for the cohesion of society, for meaning in life, and at best they open out students and give them a lifelong interest in so many different dimensions of life. They learn about themselves. But universities are also the massive engines of our economy, and of our culture system, and of society. So, they are fantastic and none anywhere are better than our universities in Britain.

Sally Jeffrey: When I look around the world where PwC supports emerging markets and emerging educational sectors, the potential impact of the experience and the legacy of these British Universities to help create a solid foundation for those future educational systems is a really important opportunity.

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