Higher Education and Research Bill - Report (4th Day)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 6:30 pm on 15th March 2017.

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Photo of Baroness Garden of Frognal Baroness Garden of Frognal Deputy Chairman of Committees 6:30 pm, 15th March 2017

My Lords, I support the amendments in this group. I add thanks from these Benches to those expressed to the noble Lord, Lord Prior, and the noble Viscount, Lord Younger, for the government amendments that they have brought forward and for supporting those from noble Lords, which have certainly made it a much better Bill.

Amendment 162 mirrors an amendment which we brought forward in Committee. For all the good reasons which the noble Lord, Lord Stevenson, has expressed, it seems niggardly to have one person trying to represent the three devolved Administrations. The arrangements would be stronger if there were somebody with experience of each of the three. There are distinct differences in higher education provision in the four parts of the United Kingdom. UKRI would benefit if it had relevant experience of all. We note that the amendment insists not that the person be Scottish, Welsh or Northern Irish, but that they have experience of those three devolved Administrations. I hope that the Minister will look favourably on it.