Higher Education Authority stakeholder consultation on new strategic plan

Dr Graham Love

Dr Graham Love

Posted: 11 May, 2017

The Higher Education Authority is currently formulating a new Strategic Plan for the period up to 2021 and your input would be very much appreciated.

The new Plan is being developed against the backdrop of the National Strategy for Higher Education to 2030 and other key Government policies, as well as the forthcoming revised Higher Education System Performance Framework 2017-2021.  The new Plan will set out the vision, mission and values of the HEA along with the strategic objectives that the HEA will focus on for the next five years.

The HEA leads the strategic development of the Irish higher education and research system with the objective of creating a coherent system of diverse institutions with distinct missions. This system seeks to be responsive to the social, cultural and economic development of Ireland and its people and supports the achievement of national objectives.  An agency of the Department of Education and Skills, the HEA engages with the institutions to compile and analyse critical national data and advises the Irish Government on higher education and research policy.


The HEA has a statutory responsibility, at central government level, for the effective governance and regulation of third-level institutions and the higher education system. In exercising its mandate, the HEA works to ensure that:

  • It has due regard to institutional autonomy and academic freedom.
  • Institutional strategies are aligned with national strategic objectives.
  • Agreed objectives, based on those set out within a national framework defined by the Minister for Education and Skills, and detailed in compacts with institutions, are delivered through effective performance management at institutional and system-levels.

The HEA has been responsible for funding the universities since its inception and the Institutes of Technology since 2007 and manages a budget of approximately €1bn in its work to support the higher education and research system.  The majority of the HEA’s funding is provided to the institutions as core funding by way of a recurrent grant allocation model. The HEA provides a foundation investment for research excellence within the core funding provided to institutions. Although universities have discretion to spend the grant as they wish, it is estimated that around €140m of HEA core funding supports research capability. It is intended that such investment allows leading researchers to be given permanent tenure, contributes to the overhead cost, and allows adequate research support infrastructure to be put in place thus enabling the undertaking of research by academics across all disciplines.

Written Submissions

To help inform the new Plan, the HEA is now inviting all interested parties to give their views on how the HEA can deliver the governments vision that the Irish Higher Education system should become the best in Europe over the next decade.

Written submissions in Word format should be sent to policy@hea.ie and will be accepted from 12th Mayuntil Friday 2nd June 2017 at 5pm.

Submissions should address the following questions:

  • What changes in the higher education landscape would enable you to judge that the HEA strategy has been a real success?
  • What do you think are the key barriers / obstacles to achieving progress on the realisation of a strong and innovative higher education sector in Ireland?
  • What are the ways that the HEA can most effectively deliver on its strategic goals?

We would be grateful if you could assist in bringing the consultation to the attention of interested parties.

Dr Graham Love, Chief Executive HEA

Download the HEA Strategic Plan 2012 - 2016

More: Internationalisation, Knowledge Transfer Ireland, strategy

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