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GDP: Induction to Higher Education Governance for New Governors banner

GDP: Induction to Higher Education Governance for New Governors

This one-day event provides an opportunity for new Governors to come together to understand their roles and responsibilities as members of the governing body.

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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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This will provide new governors in higher education institutions with the necessary background, briefing and understanding to enable them to perform their duties and act as an effective member of the governing body.

The event will introduce attendees to the higher education policy environment and the consequences of recent and ongoing policy developments and debate for the role and responsibilities of a governor, and how institutions face current and future challenges. 

Attendees will receive a comprehensive overview of governance approaches and policies across higher education institutions. They will have the opportunity to learn from the valuable experience and expertise of current governors in various areas, including the student experience and the intricate relationships between university management and governance. This knowledge will enable you to effectively hit the ground running and make a meaningful impact as governors.

This is a standalone 1 day event, which takes place twice during the academic year. 



Who is this event for?

This event is designed to support and prepare those new to higher education governance for their roles and duties, and to inform individuals who might be considering embarking on a governance role within their institution.




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

09:45am   Policy Landscape - Josh Freeman, Policy Manager, HEPI

10:30am   Student Experience - Camilla Kanidow Howson, Associate Professor of Education, Imperial College London

11:00am   Break

11:15am   Role of a Governor - Understanding Regulation - Jeanette Strachan, University Secretary, University of Sheffield

11:45am   Panel of Governors - Alex Bols, Deputy Chief Executive, GuildHE & Alison Allden, Associate, Advance HE

12:15pm   Governance in HE -  Aaron Porter, Associate Director (Governance), Advance HE

12:30pm   Wrap Up and Close



Speakers and presenter for the event are being approached and will include experts from Advance HE and experienced policy and governance professionals from higher education. 

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.

Dr Camille Kandiko Howson

Associate Professor of Education, Centre for Higher Education Research and Scholarship (CHERS)
Imperial College London
Dr Camille Kandiko Howson
Camille is an international expert in higher education research with a focus on student engagement; student outcomes and learning gain; and quality, performance and accountability.

Alex Bols

Deputy Chief Executive
Alex Bols profile.png
Alex is Deputy Chief Executive at GuildHE representing over 60 smaller and specialist universities and colleges. He observes Advance HE Boards (having previously observed the QAA and HEA boards) and sits on the UK Standing Committee for Quality Assessment and HEFCW Quality Assessment Committee.

Alison Allden

Advance HE
Alison Allden
Since retiring as Chief Executive Officer of the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), Alison has developed a non-executive portfolio and consultancy career. She is currently Deputy Chair of Regents University London Ltd and on the Board of Study Group UK. She is also a member of the Bar Standards Board responsible for the regulation of barristers.



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:



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Rachel Hewitt, HEPI’s Director of Policy and Advocacy, advises new governors on how to navigate the policy environment
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"I'm new to the sector so it was a great introduction to the differences and similarities in governance"

Beverly Shears, Independent governor, De Montfort University