Gary Saunders – BA MSc
Research Officer for the Learning Landscapes in Higher Education (LLinHE) Project

I joined the University of Lincoln in 2007 as a full time Research Assistant. In addition to this, I also teach both undergraduate and postgraduate Criminology.

I have studied at the University of Lincoln and Nottingham Trent University where I gained my degree in Law and Criminology and an MSc in Social Research Methods respectively. My first research position was in 2004 working on a number projects for the Lincolnshire Country Domestic Violence Unit. In addition, I have also conducted a number of small projects for the Football Supporters Federation on tickets prices and match day attendances. After finishing my MSc at Nottingham Trent University I took the position of Research Assistant at the University of Lincoln, working on a SWAP funded project entitled the ‘Exploring the student perception(s) of assessment feedback in higher education’. Currently, I am also conducting research on a number of other pedagogic projects here at the University as well as studying for my PGDE.

I have recently started my role as Research Officer on the LLinHE project and will carry on my teaching in Criminology. My responsibilities will involve overseeing most aspects of the LLinHE project, especially the research design and implementation.


Christopher Cowburn BSc MBA MRICS
Head of Estates, The Higher Education Funding Council for Wales

My current role within HEFCW is focused on the development and implementation of best practice within the fields of estates and environmental sustainability. Over the past two years the emphasis has been on working with the sector to improve environmental efficiency and to further develop estates and capital planning. Effective use of the built environment has been a recurrent theme throughout my career in both the public and private sector. It is very satisfying to see any organisation acquire facilities that do more than meet a strategic need. At it’s best the development process can develop new relationships and working practices to the mutual benefit of all participants. A lot of very good work has already been done in identifying and quantifying needs, however identifying the key relationships and tools which can transform the process and identify the hidden synergies remains elusive. I am confident that the Research and Learning Landscapes project will do much to address this and be of real benefit to academics, students, estates professionals and the wider the community who use these facilities.
Bernard Dromgoole, Projects Adviser, The Higher Education Funding Council for England

My background is in estates and over the last 10 years in HE, the latter part project managing the UK HE Space Management Project. I am particularly interested in the financial benefits of good and appropriate space utilisation and at HEFCE with its strong sustainability agenda will be looking at better space use from the sector in the future as part of a carbon reduction agenda.
Derek Horsburgh

Fionna Duggan, Briefing Consultant, FiD Ltd

Using a combined background in architecture and psychology, Fiona works with educational institutions undergoing change, exploring how space can support (or hinder) learning/working practices and facilitate movement from ‘the way we are now’ to ‘the way we believe we could be’. She believes this journey is a collaborative process, best achieved through creative and informed discourse involving learners, educators, managers and estates.

Fiona welcomes the LLINHE project as an opportunity to better understand how the aspirations, knowledge and responsibilities of different stakeholders can support (or hinder) movement towards the goal they generally share – an excellent and sustainable learning experience for all.

Fiona convenes the RIBA’s HEDQF (Higher Education Design Quality Forum) and is an advisory member of the RIBA’s Building Futures group. She is a CABE enabler for the government’s BSF (Building Schools for the Future) programme. She contributes to the cpd programme run by PCPA (Personal Construct Psychology Association) and is an external assessor for their diploma programme.


Clare Rogers, Director, Estate Support Service, at Newcastle University

Clare is a Chartered Surveyor (Land Management and Development). She has been Director, Estate Support Service, at Newcastle University since 1999. In 2001, Clare led on an early HEFCE Good Management Practice Project in Space Management, developing Space Management Policy guidelines though case studies of good practice ( ). As a result she was asked to join the Space Management Group’s 3-year research project. Clare also led the development of two innovative, flexible research buildings at Newcastle University and commissioned case studies of occupier perceptions and critical success factor outcomes. These are summarised in the SMG Case Studies report.

Clare is currently involved in two research projects the LLHE and the IEE, a similar project looking at innovative research space. She believes passionately that innovative, quality space (effectively utilised) is integral to achieving the mission of Higher Education Institutions.

As a qualified University teacher and researcher herself, Clare believes that by finding ways to blend pedagogy, IT and flexible, attractive environments, we can make a great difference to the quality of the student HE experience into the future. Such projects are underway at Newcastle.


John Raferty, Pro Vice-Chancellor for External Affairs and Dean of the School of the Built Environment, Oxford Brookes University.

John Raftery joined Oxford Brookes in 2000, where he is currently the Pro Vice-Chancellor for External Affairs and concurrently Dean of the School of the Built Environment. Professor Raftery studied at University College Cork and Liverpool Polytechnic where he gained his PhD in 1984. Following a period as Senior Research Scientist at the Technical Research Centre of Finland in Helsinki he worked at the University of Greenwich and the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Two of his recent books are, The construction sector in the Asian economies (2004) and, Risk management for projects (2006).

As Pro Vice-Chancellor for External Affairs his responsibilities include the International Strategy, the Associate College Partnership and the master planning of a new £110 million capital programme for the University. Among many other external roles, he is Chair of the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) EMS Steering Group, the Aim Higher Steering Group for Milton Keynes, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire and the Oxfordshire Employers Racial Equality Network.


Elizabeth Heaps BA MA DipLib

I was appointed Pro-Vice Chancellor for Estates and Strategic Projects at the University of York in October 2007.  My career until then had been in libraries and information, most of it at the University of York where I became University Librarian in 1997 and from 2003 was also the Director of the Borthwick Institute for Archives.  During that time, I led projects to design and build the Raymond Burton Library for Humanities Research, its extension with the assistance of a successful Lottery bid to create a major facility for the archives, and a refurbishment programme for the existing University Library.

My current role as PVC is to lead on strategy and policy with regard to the estate, and specifically to be in charge of the development of the second campus adjacent to the existing campus.  The first phase of this £700m development, which will double the size of the campus over 10-20 years, will provide academic and residential accommodation.  My post acts as a bridge between academic and estates staff, to ensure that the development of the estate is driven by the academic needs of the University.  I lead the strategic project groups for all building and major landscaping developments from their inception and planning stages, through construction to post implementation review


Jim McConnell, Director of Estates and Buildings, University of Glasgow BEng (Hons) MSc CDipAF DipCG PGCPSE

I have been the Director of Estates and Buildings at the University of Glasgow since December 2005, immediately prior to that I was Head of Facilities for three shipyards on the Clyde. My early career was spent working in oil rig, ship, submarine and aircraft design, construction and commissioning and for the past fifteen years I have been working in corporate real estate construction, maintenance and facilities management in the aerospace, manufacturing, marine and higher education sectors.

My professional interests lie in shaping and delivering internal client services which enable organisations to understand how to align their business and real estate strategies and how to manage their estates from a whole lifecycle perspective; how corporate real estate management should evolve to deliver these services; and what innovative, efficient and effective working environments will look like in the future.

I am delighted to be part of the Learning Landscapes project and looking forward to supporting the production of tools and guidance for the UK HE sector that can enable academic and estates stakeholders to discuss and develop learning, teaching and associated administrative spaces which align to Universities strategic visions, values and objectives.