Robbins revisited

Robbins revisitedEarlier this week, the Social Market Foundation (SMF) published Robbins Revisited: Bigger and Better Higher Education, a new publication by the Minister for Universities and Science, David Willetts. As the SMF points out, it is half a century since “Robbins published his ground-breaking report on the key aims and principles for the future of Higher Education. The report has shaped the policies of successive governments since 1963”.

The SMF goes on to say that Willetts’ pamphlet “explores how the Robbins Report influences Government policy today. Willetts sets out his vision for the Higher Education system. Demographic pressures and improved education standards in schools are likely to lead to further expansion of higher education, which a new sustainable and fair funding model enables. Willetts outlines reforms to ensure that high-quality and innovative teaching sits at the heart of what universities offer”.

The 50th anniversary of the Robbins report, and indeed Willetts’ pamphlet, has attracted comment from a number of quarters including those as diverse as Elizabeth Gibney’s Robbins: 50 years later in the Times Higher Education and Tom Bailey’s Remembering Robbins on the wonkhe: the home of higher education wonks blog. Some light reading for the weekend.