Strategies for Effective HE-Employer Engagement

A South West Higher Level Skills Pathfinder Research Report

Bolden R, Hirsh W, Connor H, Petrov G, Duquemin A |   | University of Exeter Business School and Council for Industry and Higher Education | Jan 2010

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This is the third in a series of reports summarising the outcomes of research to support the South West Higher Level Skills Pathfinder Project 1.

The first of these mapped out the higher skills and employer engagement (EE) landscape as portrayed through policy and research literature 2.

The second summarised a series of in-depth case studies of EE initiatives in higher education (HE) to shed light on key facilitators and barriers as perceived by those people directly involved in developing and delivering projects 3.

This final report complements the two previous publications through a series of case studies of 10 English HE institutions (HEIs) on their institutional strategies to EE. Together these reports give an overview of the field of HE-EE and how universities and other HE providers are working with employers to address higher skills needs.

Key questions addressed in this report include:

  • To what extent do institutions have a clear strategy for EE and how is this supported through organisational structures and processes?
  • Is it possible to discern similarities and differences between HEIs vis-à-vis their approach to EE?
  • How is EE communicated and implemented both for internal and external audiences?
  • How are contextual changes impacting upon HE-EE?