Supporting Higher Education in London

London Higher Education Week 2021

About the event

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We are excited to announce the launch of London Higher’s London Higher Education Week, a week of events showcasing the higher education sector in London next month. “London Higher Education Week: Stepping Up” will highlight the ways in which universities and higher education colleges across the capital have been stepping up for the city itself, working with local communities, businesses, and the public sector, as well as providing a supportive experience to students.

The week will also showcase how London’s higher education sector continues to step up by providing innovation and skills in areas such as lifelong learning and sustainability, thus playing an integral part in the local and national recovery effort.

“London HE Week” will be an excellent opportunity for London’s higher education institutions and key stakeholders to come together, not only to celebrate work that is ongoing, but also to look strategically at the growing importance of London HE in the future. It will run from 11-15 October 2021 and we do hope as many of you as possible will be keen to join us.

Please read on for details about how you can register for our online events, which are free of charge to those from London Higher member institutions, or register for our all access pass to our online events here. Invites for our in-person events will be sent to selected guests shortly.  We recommend booking at your earliest opportunity since numbers will be limited.

Each day of our programme will be organised thematically and will address the following topics:

Monday 11 October: Stepping up together

EVENT: Monday 11 October: A Community Good: Higher Education Outreach and London’s Post-Pandemic Recovery, 12.00-13.00 via Zoom

Higher Education providers, as ‘anchor institutions’, have a major role to play in supporting London’s social and economic recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic. As just one example, the outreach activities they run can help to address lost learning and promote community cohesion.

Collaboration between HEIs and community partners is already commonplace, but what makes it effective? This AccessHE lunchtime webinar will:

  • Explore the specific contribution to joint outreach initiatives that HE and local partners can make
  • Offer practical tips and guidance for outreach practitioners seeking to develop collaborative outreach projects
  • Identify priority areas for partnership-working within different areas of London
  • Broker connections between HE providers and community organisations to begin addressing these priorities.

The programme will involve discussion and case study presentations exploring the following initiatives:

  • King’s College London’s Civic Leadership Academy (Yeme Onoabhagbe, Head of Student Outcomes)
  • University College London’s Evaluation Exchange (Dr Gemma Moore & Ruth Unstead-Joss, Project Leads)
  • AccessHE’s community-based outreach programmes in north London (Beth Hayden & Geraldine Withey, Outreach Coordinators)

EVENT: Monday 11 October: London: HE Week: stepping up together – local civic partnerships, 14:30-16:00, via MS Teams

This event will examine how universities across London draw on their civic partnerships to transform communities by providing support through infrastructure, projects and investing in the regeneration of our towns and cities, to drive change and help level-up sub-regional areas of the capital.

With speakers from BIG South London, the West London Alliance, and others, this event will showcase local sub-regional partnerships across London and will provide concrete examples of how working together at a local level can lead to effective change. Each participating organisation will share their own specific objectives, achievements and vision, before taking questions from the floor and partaking in a roundtable discussion.

We are planning for this meeting to be conducted virtually, via MS Teams, and full joining details will be provided.

SHOWCASE: London HE’s community engagement

Community engagement is a huge part of the identity of London’s universities. Whether it be through industry placements, enterprise schemes, volunteering or practical study experience, students are strongly encouraged to take active roles in their communities.

Throughout the day London Higher will showcase the ways in which London’s HEIs have benefitted their local communities. Using social media threads, we will highlight case studies about how members stepped up throughout the last year, from volunteering to sharing resources, as well as how they benefit their communities all year round.

To submit a case study to this social media showcase, please email

Tuesday 12 October: Stepping up for recovery

London’s HEIs are looking to the future and finding ways to ensure that oncoming challenges are met effectively.  From helping a student cohort who have been enormously impacted by the pandemic to thrive at university, to considering ways in which to work sustainably, we will celebrate innovation in delivery from our members both individually and collectively.

EVENT: Tuesday 12 October: London HE Week: stepping up for recovery – student wellbeing10:30-13:00, in person, central London venue TBC: invite only

Working together, London’s HEIs are stepping up for students’ wellbeing. At this session, London Higher’s Mental Health and Wellbeing network will meet to showcase and discuss the successful bids from across the London Higher membership in the latest round of Office for Students’ funding. This session will provide opportunities for attendees to learn from each other at this critical time in improving students’ mental health and discuss best practice.

We will also celebrate the launch of Wellbeing Connect, London Higher’s exciting, new mental health and wellbeing platform, designed to improve continuity of care for students from this academic year.

EVENT: Tuesday 12 October: London HE Week: stepping up for recovery – a sustainable future, 14:30-16:00, via MS Teams

Ahead of the COP26 summit in November, and to celebrate the work of London Higher’s sustainability network, we shall be hosting a roundtable discussion on to both acknowledge work that London’s universities are already doing to work sustainably, and to identify areas where collaboration between institutions could see London further stepping up to address the climate change challenge. From Net Zero plans to collaborations with stakeholders across the city, this event will highlight how London Higher members are seeking to lead the way on the sustainability agenda, while discussing ways in which greater efforts can be developed.

At this session, we will hear from the Rt. Hon. Chris Skidmore MP about his experiences of signing the UK up to host the COP26 while interim Minister for Energy and Clean Growth. He will speak about the importance of universities playing their part in ensuring that the UK’s climate change agenda is addressed and how higher education institutions can work more effectively with government to aid progress towards our shared goals of a cleaner future.

Wednesday 13 October: London HE Week: stepping up for the future

EVENT: Wednesday 13 October 2021: London HE Week: stepping up for the future –imagining pan-London micro-credentials, 14:30-16:00, via MS Teams

Following on from our successful micro-credentials strategic conversation in June with the QAA, London Higher is hosting a further discussion to progress the development of a London-based micro-credentials scheme.

As well as progressing plans between our members, this event will provide a platform to talk about how London is best placed to lead the way in innovative pathways to lifelong learning.

Our hope is that this session will end with a clear road-map for developing a pan-London micro-credentials pilot.

SHOWCASE: LondonHE powering business and enterprise

If you want to start a business, there is no place like London. That’s why we’re going to be dedicating a whole day to show just how London’s universities are turbocharging student entrepreneurship, spin-outs and SMEs. We will showcase examples of best practice and celebrate London’s student entrepreneurial success stories across the disciplines.

To submit a case study to this interactive showcase, please email

CLOSING EVENT: Thursday 14 October: London HE Week: stepping up, with Paul Scully MP, Minister for London 15:30-17:00, in person, central London venue TBC: invite only

For our flagship London Higher Education Week reception, the main event of the week, we are delighted to be joined by Paul Scully MP, Minister for London

During this reception, which will gather heads of institutions from the diverse membership of London Higher, as well as other invited guests and stakeholders, we will be celebrating the many ways in which London’s universities work beyond the “campus”, engaging with the capital’s businesses, partnering with healthcare providers, improving local communities, and harnessing their to make a positive difference. We will also look towards the future at ways in which London’s HE sector works together and with other key stakeholders across the city to enhance and improve it for all.

This meeting will take place in person, at a central London venue to be confirmed. Covid safety remains a priority, and guidelines will be shared accordingly.


Contact Sarah Hurst