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The Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) and Jisc are in discussion regarding the intention to integrate the two organisations more closely, to advance the aim of making the UK the global leader in data- and digitally-enabled higher education.
Combined, the two organisations believe that their complementary strengths can provide better services to the sector, help to manage subscriptions and enhance the impact of higher education in the UK.
Conversations are at an early stage and the detail needs to be worked through. This includes consulting with key stakeholders, assessing what it means in reality for each organisation and, above all, ensuring the status of HESA as the designated data body is protected.
HESA and Jisc have a long-standing and successful relationship, having developed services such as Heidi Plus to deliver business intelligence for HE providers, public sector and charities.
This collaboration builds on the recommendations of the 2017 Bell Review for sector agency consolidation and increased value for money. The two organisations are now seeing how, together, they can bring a stronger offer to their members through complementary capabilities and expertise in the collection, analysis, and use of data.
HESA chief executive, Paul Clark, said:
“I believe that UK HE has the potential to enhance its global position through the effective use of digital and data-driven enhancements. Building on our existing work with Jisc, this closer integration will be the first step in realising these ambitions.”
Jisc chief executive, Paul Feldman, said:
“Jisc’s vision is for a digitally advanced lifelong learning nation, transformed by technology. The availability and use of data is critical to realising this, so integration with HESA offers greater potential to create and innovate together as well as deliver an even stronger offer and better value for our members. Among potential benefits could be new data insights and sector performance diagnostics.”