The Association of University Administrators (AUA) exists to “advance and promote the professional recognition and development of all who work in professional services roles in higher education, and to be an authoritative advocate and champion for the sector”. For more than 40 years, AUA has held an annual conference and exhibition — the largest of its kind in the UK — with this year’s event is being held at the University of Manchester’s University Place venue from 14th to 16th April.
The overarching theme of this year’s conference is Revolution & Reinvention, and according to the organisers attendees will have a range of sessions to choose from which should:
- Enhance their knowledge and understanding of the sector
- Explore new concepts and ideas in HE management and administration
- Share good practice
- Develop new skills
The Revolution & Reinvention theme fits well with what EMSI are trying to accomplish in the HE sector. In the modern economy, universities are increasingly expected to play not just the traditional roles of educators and researchers, but also a new role as economic drivers. However, any university that seeks to become a key economic driver without first understanding the underlying dynamics of their local economy is almost guaranteed to end up with the wrong answers. What is required is reinvention and new solutions.
We believe that any university looking to seriously become a key economic developer must develop a good understanding of what is going on in the economy — not necessarily the national economy, but more crucially the local and regional economy in which the university is situated. This is where local Labour Market Information (LMI) comes in. Solid LMI can give universities an in-depth understanding of their local and regional labour markets, and with this information to hand, they can understand the dynamics and trends of their local economy and formulate strategies accordingly.
This is why we are exhibiting at this year’s conference. As LMI specialists, we have the ability to assist in this reinvention, providing detailed labour market data to help universities understand the connection between their institution and the needs of their local economy. This will enable them to better bridge the gap between the real conditions and demands out there in their local and regional economy, and their goal of driving economic growth in those areas.
In addition to our exhibition stand, we will also be heading up a presentation looking at the part that LMI can play for universities seeking to play a key role in economic development. In The Story Power of Data, we will be explaining how LMI can be used to good effect, demonstrating how one university in particular — Southampton Solent — has used LMI to achieve positive social and economic outcomes in South Central England.
Those attending the presentation should come away with a good understanding in the following areas:
- How detailed LMI can be leveraged to create a demand-driven focus for university planning, as well as community and learner engagement
- How LMI can be used to articulate the value of universities within the economy
- A good understanding of how LMI can be used in student recruitment and can play a key role in Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG) activities
This session will be of interest to those who work in student services, governance, research, planning and marketing.
Come and see us in the exhibition area on Stand 2, or see our presentation at 3:30pm on Tuesday 15th April (Session 314). For more details about EMSI and our tools, email Andy Durman (email@example.com)