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GDP: Governance in Scotland

GDP: Governance in Scotland

The GDP Scotland event provides a state-of-the-nation view on governance in HE.


The GDP Scotland event provides attendees, with an update on the developing impacts and requirements of the latest legislation and regulation on Scottish HE institutions and covers the consequences for governance approaches, policies and professionals.

Sessions and speakers will consider how governance professionals can fulfil their duties and support effective governance and oversight across university funding and financing, academic quality as well as student access and experience. 

This is a standalone one day event. 



Who is this event for?

This event is designed to inform and support new and experienced governance staff, Members of Court, Independent Governors, Chairs and University leaders. 


Discover GDP: Governance in Scotland

22 May 2024
Location: Virtual


Book your place

Evolving higher education governance brochure

Our new Evolving higher education governance 2023-24 brochure details our support for boards, governance professionals and individual governors. Find out more about our consultancy and enhancement services, the dates for our Governor Development Programme 2023-24 and upcoming exclusive content and projects for Advance HE members.

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Plan your professional development for 2023-24 using our NEW Development Planner

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09:30am   Welcome & Introductions - Aaron Porter, Associate Director (Governance), Advance HE

09:50am   Overview of Higher Education Policy in Scotland - Claire McPherson, Director, Universities Scotland

10:30am   Oversight of Quality and the Student Experience - Alastair Robertson, Director of the Graduate School, Glasgow Caledonian University

11:15am   Break

11:30am   Understanding the International Environment in Scottish HE - Rachel Sandison, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, External Engagement, Glasgow University

12:10pm   Breakout Discussions

12:40pm   Final Remarks

12:45pm   Close


Aaron Porter

Associate Director (Governance)
Advance HE
Aaron leads on Advance HE governance activity through the delivery of our national Governor Development Programme which engages with around 900 governors across the UK on an annual basis. He has extensive experience leading reviews of over 25 governing boards. Aaron was previously President of the National Union of Students (NUS) and also chair of trustees for the organisation.

Claire McPherson

Director of Universities Scotland
Universities Scotland
Claire McPherson
Claire McPherson became Director of Universities Scotland on 25 March 2024, joining from the Scottish Government. Claire has worked in various roles in over a decade of service in the Scottish Government. Prior to the Scottish Government, Claire served as the Deputy Director of Policy at the Scottish Funding Council. She also has ten years in a variety of roles at the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales.

Alastair Robertson

Pro Vice-Chancellor in Learning and Teaching
Glasgow Caledonian University
Alastair Robertson
In his role at Glasgow Caledonian University, Alastair has responsibility for providing strategic leadership across the institution in the development, delivery and design of learning, teaching, educational research, academic development, widening participation and library services.

Rachel Sandison

Deputy Vice-Chancellor
University of Glasgow
Rachel Sandison
Rachel is responsible for leading the University of Glasgow’s strategy for external engagement covering an integrated portfolio of International Policy and Partnerships; Marketing and Communications; Brand and Reputation Management; Transnational Education; Student Recruitment and Admissions; Widening Access and Lifelong Learning; Development and Alumni Relations; and Civic Engagement. Rachel is also the University’s Sanctuary Champion.


This event will be delivered virtually through Zoom, with joining instructions sent out by the governance team two weeks before the day of the event.

Along with the joining instructions and links delegates will receive a copy of the programme, with finalised timings, topics, and speakers.

The event will be delivered as as a series of presentations, discussions and panels, with time after each for questions and comments.

For any enquiries regarding the event please contact the Programmes and Events Team at: