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Engagement and programme governance

Further to our announcement on a revised approach and direction for the Data Futures programme we have updated our programme governance and approach.

Background to programme governance

When the Data Futures programme was established, HESA approached the following representative organisations and sector bodies to request a nominee to sit on the Data Futures programme board:
•    Alternative provider representative
•    Association of Heads of University Administration (AHUA)
•    Department for the Economy (NI)
•    GuildHE
•    HESPA
•    Jisc nominee
•    Office for National Statistics (ONS)
•    Office for Students (OfS)
•    Scottish Funding Council (SFC)
•    Universities and Colleges Information Systems Association (UCISA)
•    Universities UK (UUK)

Updated governance approach

To improve responsiveness and support robust decision making across the programme, we have added an additional layer within our governance structure. This has led to the inception of the new programme board, a focussed group comprising representatives from statutory customers, UCISA and ARC

Data Futures Programme Board

The new Data Futures Programme Board is a subset of the Sponsoring Group, including statutory customers and sector representatives.

This addition to our programme governance will improve oversight across the programme, giving the programme more opportunity for additional feedback and support for escalations, where required.

Responsibilities of the Data Futures Programme Board:
•    Approve key Programme artefacts (e.g. Requirements, Data Model, Benefits Profile).
•    Provide direction or feedback when required on delivery artefacts, including Design Principles, Test Strategy, Business Change Plan, communications plans.
•    Oversight of programme budget within funding parameters.

HESA will also take on more development activity across the programme, as we move into a new phase with our external contractor.

Data Futures Sponsoring Group

The previous Programme Board will now become the Data Futures Sponsoring Group and will continue to meet on a quarterly basis. We have updated membership to include an additional HESA Board member and Academic Registrars Council (ARC) representative.

The Sponsoring Group will take a strategic view across the programme. Their responsibilities include oversight and decision making on overall cost and changes to timelines and scope. They will provide assurance on how decisions have been made and will commission external assurance if required, and will provide support to the programme’s Senior Responsible Owner, as well as the HESA Board.



Professor Mark E. Smith CBE

Vice Chancellor, University of Lancaster, Chair of Data Futures Programme Board





Professor Aletta Norval

Deputy Vice Chancellor (Education), Anglia Ruskin University, UUK nominee




Alison Jones

University Secretary, Bradford University, nominated member for HESPA



John Melia

Deputy Academic Registrar, Harper Adams University, GuildHE nominee

GuildHE logo


Bethan Owen, HEFCW


Bethan Owen

Director of Institutional Engagement, HEFCW, HEFCW nominee





Chris Cobb

Pro Vice-Chancellor and Chief Operating Officer, University of London, Association of Heads of University Administration (AHUA) nominee





Katherine Curran

Head of Student Information Systems, Pearson College, Alternative Provider representative






Richard Puttock

Director of data, foresight and analysis, OfS, OfS nominee





Martin Smith

Chief Funding and Information Officer, Scottish Funding Council, SFC nominee





Patrick Hackett

Registrar, Secretary and Chief Operating Officer, University of Manchester, UUK nominee





Paul Clark

Senior Responsible Owner, HESA





Peter Benton

Director of Population and Public Policy Operations, Office for National Statistics, ONS nominee





Peter O'Rourke

Director of IT, University of Campus Suffolk, UCISA nominee





Phil Richards

Chief Innovation Officer, Jisc, Jisc nominee





Paul Butler

Director of Information and Library Services, University of Greenwich, UCISA nominee





Trevor Cooper

Director of Higher Education, Department for the Economy NI





Annette Vancil

Director of Technology Transformation, Higher Education Statistics Agency



Rob Phillpotts, Director of HESA Statutory Services


Rob Phillpotts

Managing Director of HESA Statutory Services, Higher Education Statistics Agency



How you can be involved

Workshops and webinars

At key stages in the programme, we will schedule workshops for providers and software suppliers. We will announce upcoming opportunities to our IDS contacts and via our JiscMail lists.

We will be working with sector bodies during key phases of the programme, through the Provider forum and additional groups.

Data specification: consultations

Our data specification overview lists all those items in the data model available for consultation: we will update this page when consultations are live and communicate availability via our JiscMail groups.

Contact us

If you have queries or would like to provide feedback, please contact [email protected].