Skip to main content

Helping HE shape its future

We work with higher education institutions around the world to improve higher education for staff, students and society.

Advance HE is a member-led charity of and for the sector that works with partners across the globe to improve higher education for staff, students and society. 

Our three strategic goals support the priorities of our members and of the higher education sector:

  • Enhance confidence and trust in HE
  • Address systemic inequalities and advance education to meet the evolving needs of students and society
  • Support the work of our members and the HE sector.

We are experts in higher education, with a particular focus on teaching and learning, governance, leadership development and equality, diversity and inclusion. We work with our network of global associates and partners, and with people, providers and systems around the world, to understand different contexts and challenges in the higher education sector, and to deliver solutions. 

We deliver our support through a variety of channels, applying our expertise and sharing best practice. These include professional development programmes, events, fellowships, awards, surveys as well as consultancy and enhancement services. 

In addition, our membership provides a range of research, knowledge and resources for members, as well as accreditation for teaching and learning and equality charters that aim to advance gender and race equality in higher education and research.

Our purpose

We help higher education organisations be the best they can be by unlocking the potential of their people.

We are from the sector, not for profit and our work is driven by our belief in the transformative power of higher education for people, places, and society.

Our vision 

Higher education providers and systems that are inclusive, sustainable and high-performing in all they do.

Advance HE Strategy 2021-24

There are many challenges facing institutions and research institutes and how we support members in this context has rightly informed the development of our strategy to 2024.

Please take an opportunity to explore our strategy by visiting our new strategy web page.

Explore our strategy
Buff line

Meet Advance HE

The Interim Chair of the Board of Advance HE

Professor Helen Langton is Vice-Chancellor of the University of Suffolk and a Professor in Children’s Cancer Nursing Education. Helen is a lifelong supporter of excellence in learning, teaching and research and passionate about the role of people to achieve this.

Helen has held a number of senior posts in universities in the UK and has a range of experience across health and social care, science, social science and education.

Helen has been a member of a number of national boards and bodies including with the Nursing and Midwifery Council, Department of Health and the Quality Assurance Agency. Helen is Chair of Governors at an independent school and a trustee of East Anglia Children’s Hospice.

Internationally Helen has held board membership for the Academy of Health Care Improvement, and the De Souza Nursing Institute in Toronto, Canada and is an Editor of the International Journal of Child Health Care.

Advance HE Board
Professor Helen Langton

Chief Executive of Advance HE

Alison Johns was appointed chief executive of Advance HE in autumn 2017.

Prior to that she was the chief executive of the Leadership Foundation. She has worked in higher education for 25 years. 
Before becoming chief executive, she was head of policy for leadership, governance and management at the Hefce (now the Office for Students), where she established both the Leadership Foundation and the Equality Challenge Unit. 

She is a past president of the Association of University Administrators (AUA) and represents the UK on the Association of Commonwealth Universities Human Resources Management Network and has recently joined the British Council’s planning committee for Going Global, the major international higher education conference. 

Alison has extensive international experience of higher education including leading the review of teaching and learning for the Australian government. This led to the establishment of the Office for Learning and Teaching to enhance teaching quality across the Australian higher education sector. Alison regularly takes part in conferences and events, both nationally and internationally, speaking on all aspects of university leadership, governance and management.

The Executive Group
Alison Johns

More about Advance HE

Our Charitable Objective

Our overarching charitable objective is to promote higher education for the public benefit detailed further in our articles of association.

Advance HE Articles of Association

Advance HE Statutory Accounts 2021-22

Advance HE Statutory Accounts 2020-21

Advance HE Statutory Accounts 2019-20

Advance HE Statutory Accounts 2018-19

Advance HE Statutory Accounts 2017-18


The UK registered office of Advance HE is:

Innovation Way, York Science Park, Heslington, York, YO10 5BR

The registered Ireland address of Advance HE is:

First Floor, Penrose 1, Penrose Dock, Cork, T23 KW81, Ireland

Operational Addresses:

Advance HE First floor, Napier House, 24 High Holborn, London, WC1V 6AZ  
Advance HE IC 2.12 Innovation Centre, Innovation Way, York Science Park, York YO10 5DG


Company registration: 04931031
Company limited by guarantee registered in Ireland no. 703150
Registered charity, England and Wales:1101607
Registered charity, Scotland: SC043946.