Our International Centre for Higher Education Management (ICHEM) supports critical research, leadership and practice to strengthen the innovative capacity of higher education.

We focus on the impact of global political, economic and social forces on higher education; transformations across national higher education systems; and organisational change and innovation in universities.

As a group of researchers, we are committed to:

  • building interdisciplinary research capacity to advance the field of higher education studies
  • supporting strategic change processes with governments, HE institutions and international organisations through consultancy, policy recommendations and leadership insights
  • providing space for critical engagement
  • disseminating innovative, ethical and sustainable strategies through seminars, conferences, keynotes and master classes
  • bringing together other researchers, policy makers and leaders in global praxis circles to co-create new knowledge for change
  • contributing to executive development and leadership programmes, including our PhD and the DBA in Higher Education Management, which constitute the largest group of managers researching higher education worldwide

Research themes

Our research on higher education transformation centres around the following themes:

  • Higher education and global wellbeing
  • Globalisation, internationalisation and regional development
  • Higher education policy, markets and new public management
  • The governance of research, education and professional practice
  • Innovation, social responsibility and sustainability
  • Strategy as practice and learning organisations
  • Leadership and professions
  • Higher education, social mobility and social justice
  • Graduate employability and the labour market

Research projects

  • 'Organisational Perspectives on Accountability and Learning : School Management Models and the Social Impact of Schooling in Mumbai and Kathmandu'. Researchers: Robin Shields (PI), Andres Sandoval Hernandez and Hugh Lauder. 2017-2019
  • 'Governance of Higher Education in the UK and Europe'. Researchers: Jurgen Enders, Michael Shattock (UCL IoE), Ellen Hazelkorn (Dublin Institute of Technology) and Aniko Horvath (UCL IoE). 2015-2020
  • 'Business Schools, Social Responsibility and Inclusive Development'. Researchers: Rajani Naidoo, Veronica Hope Hailey, Peter Nuttall. Funder: Accelerating International Research Collaboration Scheme. 2017
  • 'Pathways to Personal and Public Good: Understanding Access to, Student experiences of, and Outcomes from South African Undergraduate Education. Access Theme'. Researchers: Rajani Naidoo, Melanie Walker (University of Free State), Vincent Carpentier (UCL IoE), Paul Ashwin (Lancaster) and Jenni Case (University of Cape Town PIs). Funder: ESRC/NRF. 2016-2018
  • 'Working in the shadows of professionalism: An investigation into the career experiences and dynamics of paraprofessionals'. Researcher: Stefanie Gustafsson. Funder: ESRC Future Research Leaders. 2017
  • 'The Role of Business Schools for New Generations of Innovative Business Leaders'. Researcher: Hong Bui. Funder: The British Academy. 2016

Consultancy projects

  • 'Leading Collaboration to Solve Global Challenges'. Consultant: Rajani Naidoo. Funder: Leadership Foundation. 2017
  • 'Transnational Higher Education: A Guide to Creating Partnerships in India'. Consultants : Rajani Naidoo, Neil Kemp and Sudhanshu Bhushan. British Council. 2015.
  • 'Higher Education, Social Capital and Social Mobility'. Consultant: Rajani Naidoo. Funder: Higher Education