Founding the New Universities of the 1960s: Interpreting the UGC’s Strategy

  • Ourania FilippakouEmail author
  • Ted Tapper
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Education book series (BRIEFSEDUCAT)


Although the UGC, as revealed in its reports on the university system, was aware that there would eventually need for existing universities to expand in order to accommodate growing student demand, it can be claimed that it was slow to recognise this evolving pressure. In fact when the existing new universities refused categorically to expand sufficiently to meet the projected additional student numbers, it resorted to the strategy of proposing the founding of new universities. It, then, justified this on the grounds that there was a growing need for experimentation in the organisation of knowledge and that newly founded universities would be better able to achieve this. Having achieved government funding for the expansion of the system, the UGC set up procedures for the creation of new universities, of which the approach from Sussex was the first to be reviewed. The Sussex bid established some general parameters; an Academic Board would set up inter-disciplinary degree programmes, the institution would have the university title and be able to award postgraduate degrees, the local authorities would provide a site of at least 200 acres and some initial financial support. The Sussex initiative was followed by six other English foundations, and the University of Stirling in Scotland and the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland. The chapter concludes with a brief discussion of how different these universities actually were concluding, with the general consensus, that they were academically innovative rather than new!


Innovative or new Change by internal pressure 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EducationBrunel University LondonUxbridgeUK
  2. 2.Oxford Centre for Higher Education Policy Studies (OxCheps)New College, OxfordOxfordUK

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