In the current environment, effective governance of higher education institutions has become a high profile issue. Every governing body of an HEI in the UK (not including Scottish HEIs) should undertake a review of its effectiveness every four years. In Scotland governing bodies are expected to review their own effectiveness every year with an externally facilitated evaluation every five years. The CUC Code of Governance (article 7.11, p.26) suggests that ‘Many governing bodies find an external perspective in this process useful’.
Drawing on our network of experts, we provide an external perspective through our Framework for Identifying and Supporting Governing Body Effectiveness Reviews in HE, developed in partnership with CUC.
Want to find out more?
If you would like to know more about Governance Effectiveness Reviews, complete the form below to download the information sheet and one of our team will be in touch to discuss this further with you.
Customising Your Review
"We embarked on the review because we wanted to refine our governance in the context of a very
different environment for higher education. Advance HE’s comprehensive understanding of the sector, the challenges facing governing bodies and best practice in the sector, meant that their work was extremely productive and their report insightful."
University Registrar and Secretary
A Framework for supporting governing body effectiveness
At the heart of our approach is the framework for identifying and supporting governing body effectiveness reviews in higher education, developed in partnership with the Committee of University Chairs.
The framework sets out three key factors (enablers, working relationships, outcomes) for consideration of governing body effectiveness and offers a tool to support members in conducting their reviews. These three inter-related elements are an effective basis for underpinning higher education governing body effectiveness reviews.
Why Advance HE?
Advance HE is at the forefront of providing support to boards, individual Governors and staff such as Clerks and Secretaries to improve governance effectiveness. We support good governance throughout HE by: facilitating the sharing of practice; upskilling and professionalising support with a focus on behaviours as well as process; and providing benchmarked, independent challenge and advice, and other bespoke support.
Using the framework for identifying and supporting governing body effectiveness reviews in higher education, we have conducted reviews with many institutions, including Strathclyde University, Manchester Metropolitan University, Gloucestershire, Regent’s University London, Marjon, Keele, Nottingham Trent, Greenwich, Bath Spa, Edge Hill, London Film School and the Open University.
Governance Effectiveness Benchmarking
We also offer a unique Governance Effectiveness Benchmarking service. Our extensive anonymous dataset, created from our previous reviews of over 25 higher education providers, enables us to provide insight and compatative analysis.
This includes insights on key themes or trends such as succession planning for diversity or member participation and comparaive analysis against core indicators with othe anonymised providers, or by mission group size or location.
Governance Effectiveness Review Case Study: Aberystwyth University
Read the case study from our Governance Effectiveness Review at Aberystwyth University.
Aberystwyth’s 2018-23 Strategic Plan recognises effective, efficient and accountable governance as a hallmark of the university.
The University has, under the leadership of the new Vice-Chancellor and with the active support of Council, sought to address challenges such as governance structure and processes, increased competition, value for money and changes in membership of the governing body and executive leadership team.
Perspectives on Governance
What contributes to an effective board culture? Our Governor Dialogues series considered how the culture of a board affects work. In a specially commissioned film, experts from across the sector provide perspectives on this theme.