- Email correspondence between Universities Scotland and the Scottish Government pertaining to meetings between these two bodies on the 15th of June 2022 and 25th July 2022.
- Any physical notes that were taken in the meetings between Universities Scotland and Scottish Government officials on the 15th of June 2022 and the 25th of July 2022.
- Details of future meetings organised as a result of either of the two meetings.
There was a meeting between the Director of the Advance Learning and Science directorate and the Director of Universities Scotland on 15 June 2022. This was an in-person meeting, and no notes were taken.
There was a meeting between Scottish Government Officials and Universities Scotland as part of the Student Support Stakeholder Engagement Group on 15 June 2022, however due to technical difficulties Universities Scotland were only able to attend briefly. I have included the agenda and meeting note in the enclosed document. The one of the papers mentioned (paper 2) within the agenda are currently unpublished and are planned to be published within the next few weeks. They have therefore been excluded. Where personal data is included amongst the papers, that has also been excluded - please see the exemptions section below. The following meeting of the Student Support Stakeholder Engagement Group took place on 25 August however, Universities Scotland issued their apologies as they were unable to attend this meeting.
There was a meeting between Scottish Government Officials and Universities Scotland as part of the Student Accommodation Group on 25 July 2022. I have included the related documents in the enclosed document. A future meeting is planned for 06 October 2022 however this has not been confirmed nor is there a future agenda available at this time.
The two meetings of the respective groups include other stakeholders and were not solely between Universities Scotland and Scottish Government Officials.
I enclose a copy of some the information you requested, as mentioned above there were no physical notes taken.
An exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party, i.e. names and contact details of individuals, and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Article 5(1) of the General Data Protection Regulation and in section 34(1) of the Data Protection Act 2018. This exemption is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.
An exemption under section 27(1) of FOISA applies to some of the information requested because we intend to publish that information in next few weeks, which is within 12 weeks of the date of your request. We consider that it is reasonable to withhold the information until that date, rather than release some of this information before the planned publication date.
This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is some public interest in release, and this will be met by our planned publication. In the meantime, there is a greater public interest in taking the time necessary to ensure the information has been properly collated and checked before it is published as planned. Also, we see no public interest in disrupting our programme of work to release the information ahead of the intended publication date.
An exemption under section 29(1)(a) of FOISA (formulation or development of government policy) applies to some of the information requested because it relates to the formulation/development of the Scottish Government’s policy.
This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is a public interest in disclosing information as part of open, transparent and accountable government, and to inform public debate. However, there is a greater public interest in high quality policy and decision-making, and in the properly considered implementation and development of policies and decisions. This means that Ministers and officials need to be able to consider all available options and to debate those rigorously, to fully understand their possible implications.
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.
- File type
- 11 page PDF
- File size
- 409.9 kB
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
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