Post-school education, research and skills: interim purpose and principles

A draft framework for building an excellent post-school education, research and skills ecosystem for further discussion and feedback.

Interim purpose and principles for post-school education, research and skills

Here are the interim purpose and principles which, at a headline level, capture the elements we have already recognised as being valuable. For each of the principles we have included topics for further discussion and debate and how, through development of an implementation plan, we might be able to support Ministers, NDPBs and other decision makers to deliver the reform necessary to secure a sustainable future.

These are the areas that we want to focus the discussion on in the next phase of engagement. We will continue targeted engagement and work to develop our approach to user centred design between now and final publication in spring 2023. Read further information on our approach to stakeholder engagement during the next phase can be found here.

If you would like to host your own event to discuss the interim Purpose and Principles, we have published a discussion guide to help guide you through how to facilitate your own session. For further information, to be kept up to date with the latest developments and or if you would like the team to support your event.



To develop new thinking, products and systems through research and to ensure that people, at every stage in life, have the opportunity and means to develop the skills, knowledge, values and attributes to fulfil their potential and to make a meaningful contribution to society.  


Principle one: high quality

High quality opportunities are available for people to enhance their knowledge and skills at the time and place that is right for them.

Principle two: Supportive and equitable

People are supported throughout their learning journey, targeting funds and additional support to those who need it most.

Principle three: globally respected

Research, teaching, innovation and knowledge exchange undertaken in Scotland, must make a difference; enhance and contribute to global wellbeing, addressing 21st Century challenges and attracting inward investment and talent to study, live and work in Scotland.

Principle four: Agile and responsive

Everybody in the ecosystem collaborates and delivers in the best interests of Scotland’s wellbeing economy.

Principle five: Transparent, resilient and trusted

The system is well governed, financially and environmentally resilient and trusted to deliver.



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