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Our latest project: the LIFES inquiry

Our latest project: the LIFES inquiry

6th May 2016

After we received news of our FETL funding, the Skills Commission team immediately began planning our next inquiry project LIFES.

LIFES is a handy acronym for Leading Innovation in Further Education and Skills. Led by Neil Bates, Principal and CE of PROCAT College, the inquiry will look at how further education/skills providers can be more innovative in the future.

Our team will look at how further education/skills providers can be more innovative in the future, with a particular focus on the leadership of innovations in their institutional structures, business models and relationships with employers, local government and other relevant stakeholders in the skills system.

In the context of a changing labour market and shifting policy landscape, we will seek to find where innovation comes from and how it can be encouraged. Looking at opportunities for greater innovation, identifying possibilities, and asking how these can be led across the system will be central to this investigation. We hope to identify any practical or policy barriers that may stand in the way of ensuring the dynamism of our further education sector. 

This inquiry will use a mix of desk-based research, evidence sessions, interviews and regional events to develop our understanding of innovation in FE and Skills. We will report its findings in October 2016.  Our next regional evidence session is being held in Manchester on 12th May and will involved local politicians, education providers, students and the Sector Skills Council.  Our lead researcher is Aaron Bowater, and if you wish to find out more about the project please get in contact by emailing or calling 0207 202 8576.