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Rumours and risks

Rachel Hewitt argues that the spending review must not diminish higher education

The upcoming Comprehensive Spending Review is likely to be one of the most significant in recent history for higher education. I expect it to say more about the government’s plans for which aspects of Philip Augar’s post-18 education and funding review may come to fruition, and to give more of an understanding around the future of research funding.

The review comes at a challenging time for the country. The impact of the coronavirus pandemic has been stark—economically, socially and in terms of health. This context means it is very doubtful that the chancellor will be announcing many generous settlements, and universities are certainly unlikely to be the first port of call for government investment.

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