Designing our Future

Closed 29 Jan 2017

Opened 9 Jan 2017

Results Updated 28 Mar 2017

This document provides a summary of the responses, received from our staff and students to date, to the ‘Designing our Future’ consultation.  The full feedback extends to over 320 pages, so this summary document seeks to capture key points raised. Inevitably, a brief overview will not be able to cover every comment or view made, but please be assured that every individual comment is being read and considered as part of the next steps to develop our strategy.

In April we will open a public consultation, on this site, so our external stakeholders can submit their views and suggestions.  The final version of the plan will then be shared on Friday 16 June – our 25th Birthday.



The power of a university stems from its ability to transform lives and communities through the interwoven threads of education, research & innovation, and engagement outside the university. For ARU to succeed and grow we need to define a strategy that will maximise our collective ability to do just this.

Why We Are Consulting

The comments and feedback we receive will inform the development of the next University Strategy for ARU. It will inevitably contain elements from this paper but these will be refined using the feedback received. Some aspects will be enhanced and strengthened, some will be scaled back and some may drop away altogether.

There are a large number of specific questions in this discussion paper. We do not expect that everyone will respond to every question but given the complexity of the university and the wide range of activities we need to consider the range of questions is important.

The outcome of the overall planning process will be a high level University Strategy that will clearly and succinctly describe the strategic vision for ARU, alongside rolling three-year Operational Plans that will sequentially support us moving towards the strategic vision.

I look forward to seeing your comments and suggestions.

Professor Iain Martin

Vice Chancellor

Download 'Designing our Future' PDF here

What Happens Next

This ‘Green Paper’ discussion document and the feedback we receive from the process are a key component in the formulation of the University Strategy and the Operational Plan.

The next stage of the process will be the development of the University Strategy that will guide and help shape ARU over the next 8-10 years. We will consult again on this draft in the first quarter of 2017.

This will inform the rolling three-year Operational Plan whose first draft will also be produced in early 2017. The Operational Plan will be a document focused on what ARU needs to do to deliver the strategy and as such will be a largely internally-focused document.

We aim to formally launch the new strategy on our 25th birthday, 16 June 2017, with a view to its coming into effect from the 2017-18 academic year.

Thank you, in advance, for your comments on this 'Green Paper'. All suggestions and comments will be carefully considered.


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