Policy Update – July 2022

Sharon Witherspoon MBE FAcSS, Head of Policy, Academy of Social Sciences 

Policy Monitor

The July Policy Monitor is out and covers consultations through September and later.  We don’t publish a Policy Monitor in August, but if an important consultation gets launched later in July, we’ll send out word.

Policy developments in HE

Government is moving ahead with its Higher Education (Freedom of Speech Bill) and considering the responses to its recent consultation on university funding.  It looks increasingly like the regulation of student number controls in England will be implemented by way of the Office for Students metric-based regulation, in addition to any minimum grade entry requirements that are put in place, which will take longer.  We are seeing signs that universities are looking hard at these measures.  Colleagues in Scotland and Northern Ireland tell us that the student numbers caps in existence there are biting, and that, with the financial pressure on English HEIs arising from the freezing of student fees, we are likely to see an increase in the number of young people in the UK who wish to attend university but are not able to.

Some of the preliminary effects of these issues will be described in our ESRC-funded project on Social Science in a Time of Change, which will be out before long.

Forthcoming social sciences and STEM report

We are continuing to work on our new Campaign for Social Science project sponsored by SAGE Publishing on social science and STEM sciences working together.  Please contact policy@acss.org.uk to nominate examples that you think we should know about!

Contact us 

Write to policy@acss.org.uk and let us know if you have suggestions or ideas about our message, or to suggest future topics we should explore.