1. This document presents the findings of a small-scale qualitative study into the motivations of higher education (HE) providers for pursuing strategic-level innovations in learning and teaching; the source of these innovations; their impact on the learning experience of students; and their financial implications for HE providers. The project tells us why some institutions invest in innovation in learning and teaching, and what the enablers of innovation in HE are.
2. The project findings are based on qualitative analyses of phone interviews, and a focus group with institutional participants from a purposive sample of 21 HE providers that took place between October 2015 and March 2016.
3. The role of students, marketisation, regulation and leadership in supporting innovation in a rapidly evolving landscape were considered. The report highlights the diverse influences on innovation and the importance of national facilitation in helping underpinning systems work effectively. It also notes the vital role of institutional leadership and the need to engage students and governing bodies.
4. The research also secured suggestions from institutions on potential developments to support innovation in learning and teaching. These included providing vision and focus by putting innovation on the agenda; convening networks; workshops; and encouraging cross-institutional collaborations to share knowledge and information across the sector, internationally and between types of HE provider. Student and employer engagement were identified as key drivers of innovation.
5. This report is for information only. No action is required.