Host and Speakers




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Simon Fanshawe OBE
Co-founder and Partner
Diversity by Design

Simon is a Co-founder and Partner of Diversity by Design; a ground-breaking consultancy that works with organisations to develop diversity solutions to strategic questions, in order to build greater performance:

Diversity by Design’s current clients include; Sheffield, Cardiff, Kingston and Hertfordshire Universities, FirstGroup, Costa, Virgin Media, the Co-op, GCHQ, NSPCC, The College of Policing and the British Army.

From 2007 – 2013 Simon was chairman of the University of Sussex Governing Council. He is currently on the Boards of Brighton Dome and Festival, Housing and Care 21 and is a Trustee of The Museum of London.

Simon was a co-founder of one of the most successful lobby and campaign groups in recent times; the lesbian and gay equality organisation Stonewall. He is now a co-founder of the Kaleidoscope Trust, supporting LGBTI activists abroad.

Simon is also a broadcaster, writer and pundit. He was awarded the OBE in the New Year’s Honours list 2013 for services to Higher Education, and was made an Honorary Doctor of the University of Sussex for services to diversity and human rights in 2013.


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Ian Apsley
Board Director
Broadway Malyan

Ian joined Broadway Malyan in 1999 and has been a Director of Broadway Malyan Holdings Ltd since 2007. In 2016, he was invited to join the Executive Committee and appointed Chair of the UK region after spending six years running the practice’s Middle East operation.

During his time in the Middle East, Ian led Broadway Malyan’s work on the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC) Future Schools Programme as well as the Prototype Schools Programme for the Qatari government. Together these have led to the roll-out of state-of-the-art schools across the Middle East.

With a passionate interest in the challenges facing a fast-developing world, Ian focuses on the social and cultural, as well as the technological aspects of design and within the practice he was the driving force in transferring Broadway Malyan to an Employee Owned Trust in 2016.

Alexandra den Heijer
Associate Professor, Real Estate Management
Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)

Alexandra den Heijer, MSc PhD is associate professor (chair Real Estate Management) at the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, Delft University of Technology (TU Delft). She has a background in Architecture (BSc) and Management (MSc). Her specialisation is planning, design and management of university campuses and buildings. She focuses on generating management information for real estate decisions. In the past decade she has developed models and theories that help universities to design and implement their campus strategies and that contribute to creating knowledge cities. All Dutch universities have supported her research from the start. Apart from the Dutch situation she has explored international references and has written many reports, articles and papers on the university and campus of the future, trends and changing concepts and campus strategies. After the fire that destroyed the building of the Faculty of Architecture in 2008 – including Alexandra’s workplace – she could put her theories to the test as member of the team that created a new home (“BK city”) for students and staff in a cultural heritage building, in an extremely tight time frame. Alexandra operates in an extensive network of national and international campus management experts – both in academia and in practice.

Her current research project explores (management of) the European campus – in an academic network – to support European decision makers. Focus is the presumed relation between the quality of the physical setting (workplace, ‘univer-city’) and the success of the knowledge economy (attracting and retaining Europe’s knowledge capital).

Harvey Dowdy
Director of Estates
University of Lincoln

Harvey Dowdy is a Chartered Surveyor and Director of Estates at the University of Lincoln.  Originally trained as an archaeologist, she has subsequently gained 30 years’ experience of commercial property management and place-making in historic towns and cities. 

Harvey has worked in the private, public and charitable sectors for organisations as diverse as the Vigers, City of York Council, Yorkshire Forward, ONE NorthEast, and the North of England Civic Trust.  She also spent 5 years as a Senior Lecturer and Course Leader at Northumbria University. Immediately prior to joining the University of Lincoln, she worked at Durham University as Deputy Director - responsible for the development of the University’s Estate Strategy and Masterplan.

Whilst at Durham, Harvey was an RICS Regional Board Member, served on the judging panel for the RICS Renaissance Awards and as a Lay Member of the Chapter of Durham Cathedral where she held the portfolio for all matters relating to the Cathedral fabric.  

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Mark Evans
Broadway Malyan
Mark specialises in the education sector and is responsible for leading design teams from inception through to delivery, most recently managing the ground-breaking Science and Health Building for Coventry University. Mark is skilled in the development of detailed design briefs and early feasibility studies, working with key client and stakeholder teams to refine design solutions into their final built form. His portfolio includes a variety of Higher and Further Education buildings.
Paul Finch OBE
Programme Director/ Editorial Director
World Architecture Festival/ The Architectural Review/Architects’ Journal

Paul Finch is programme director of the World Architecture Festival and editorial director of the Architectural Review and Architects’ Journal. After taking a history degree at Selwyn College, Cambridge he joined a specialist publishing company, and subsequently was deputy editor of Estates Times (now Property Week), 1976-1983; editor, Building Design, 1983-94; editor, Architects’ Journal, 1994-1999; editor, The Architectural Review 2005-2009; co-editor, Planning in London since 1992. He was a founding commissioner then deputy chair at the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (CABE), 1999-2005, and later chair, 2009 – 2014. He was a trustee and deputy chair at the Design Council, 2011 – 2014, where he also chaired Design Council Cabe. He chaired the London Olympics design review panel from 2005 to 2012. Honorary FRIBA in 1994; honorary doctorate, University of Westminster, 2004; honorary fellowship, University College London, 2006. Honorary membership, Architectural Association, 2014. Paul was also awarded an OBE for services to architecture in 2002.

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Stephen R Hodder MBE
Founding Partner
Hodder + Partners

Stephen Hodder was educated at the School of Architecture, University of Manchester, where he gained a Distinction in the Bachelor of Architecture degree. Following University he joined Building Design Partnership in 1981 and became a member of the Royal Institute of British Architects in 1982.

In 1996 Hodder Associates (formed 1992) received the most important award in British Architecture for a single building, the inaugural Stirling Prize for Architecture for the Centenary Building, University of Salford. The Practice, now Hodder+Partners, has won over forty major awards. The practice has realised significant projects in the leisure, cultural, residential, and commercial sectors, together with the further and higher education sector.

Professionally, Stephen has been President of the Manchester Society of Architects, RIBA North West Region Chairman, and a member of the RIBA Awards committee. He is a past member of the Education Committee and Conservation Register Steering Group and was RIBA President 2013-15, having previously been Vice President Membership, Nations and Regions.

Stephen has written and lectured widely, has been a visiting examiner at a number of schools of architecture and between 2002 and 2005 was visiting professor at the Birmingham School of Architecture. Up until 2017 he was visiting Professor at the Belfast School of Architecture and is currently the visiting Professor at the University of Salford, School of the Built Environment. He regularly acts as an assessor for architectural competitions and awards. He sits on the Design Review Panel for Places Matter! and formerly for CABE.

He was awarded an MBE for services to architecture in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List, 1998.

Stephen received an Honorary Doctorate in 2006 from the Manchester Metropolitan University for his regional, national and international contribution to architecture and won the Roses Design Award of ‘Architect of the Year’ in the same year. Stephen received an Honorary Fellowship from the University of Central Lancashire in 2013 for his contribution to architecture.

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Alison Johns
Chief Executive/ Chief Executive-Designate
Leadership Foundation for Higher Education/ the new sector agency

In September 2017, Alison was appointed as CEO-designate for a new higher education agency to be formed from the merger of the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education, the Equality Challenge Unit and the Higher Education Academy. 

Since July 2014, Alison has been Chief Executive of the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education which provides high quality higher education leadership development programmes for universities and higher education colleges in and for higher education wherever it exists. The Leadership Foundation also offers consultancy and tailored in-house development programmes providing expert advice and support - meeting the needs of individuals, teams, the executive, and the whole institution.

Alison has worked in higher education for over 20 years and she has held a number of senior positions.  Prior to her current role she was head of Policy for Leadership, Governance and Management (LGM) and also had responsibility for the internal HR and oganisational development function at the Higher Education Funding Council for England (Hefce).   

As head of LGM, Alison oversaw the efficiency brief, working in shared services, procurement and efficiency strategy and engaged in work on KPIs for governing bodies.  She has particular experience in productivity through HR management and has spoken regularly at efficiency events.

Alison is the immediate past president of the Association of University Administrators (AUA) and is the UK representative on the Association of Commonwealth Universities HRM Network.  She advised the Australian government on the establishment of the Office for Learning and Teaching to enhance teaching quality across the Australian HE sector and speaks regularly, both nationally and internationally on all aspects of university LGM.

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David Malcolm
Deputy Chief Executive and Head of Policy and External Affairs
Equality Challenge Unit

David Malcolm is Deputy Chief Executive and Head of Policy and External Affairs at the Equality Challenge Unit, responsible for its work influencing the HE sector and the wider world through policy, research, training and communications, and its engagement with sector partners, institutions and decision-makers. He is on a year-long secondment to ECU from the National Union of Students, where he is Head of Policy. He has worked in higher education for 16 years, mostly in the student movement, with a strong focus on student finance, student welfare and widening participation policy during this time. He is a member of the OFFA Advisory Group and a trustee of DSA-QAG, a charity which quality assures the Disabled Students’ Allowance. 

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Jon Milward
Financial Advisory Real Estate and Partner

Jon is a partner of Deloitte and the UK firm’s Head of Real Estate Development.  He has 26 years’ experience working as a planning and development adviser in London, UK and international markets.  Leading a team of 30 surveyors he advises on all aspects of execution, procurement, asset enhancement and exit/sale.  He has a particular interest and expertise in joint venture developments and major regeneration projects.

Jon enjoys a diverse client base including property development companies, sovereign wealth funds, major corporates and landowners in public and private sectors.

In the education sector, Jon’s experience includes:

  • Lead development partner advising on estates and land ownership;
  • Lead development partner in connection with non‑core investment portfolio;
  • Lead adviser in connection with the potential disposal/development of a major University campus; and
  • Marketing and disposal of surplus education sites.
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Laurie Pay
Director - Indirect Tax

Laurie leads the Deloitte national education tax group in the UK.  She is a Director in the VAT group and has 16 years’ experience in advising universities and other educational bodies.

Laurie has a large portfolio of education clients which include some of the largest and most prestigious Universities in the UK, and she also advises a number of private education providers, membership organisations, international organisations and other sector bodies. 

Laurie has a wealth of experience in providing her clients with practical advice on all aspects of higher education.  With regards to real estate this has included reviewing estates plans for VAT opportunities and considerations, advising on property disposals, preparing practical advice on shared use facilities, identifying cost saving opportunities, securing zero-rating on a University property, reviewing partial exemption methods and negotiating new sectors and providing advice on complex multi-party development projects.

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Ben Powell
Partner - Indirect Tax

Ben is the leader of Deloitte’s UK Public Sector Tax team, providing advice on VAT, Corporation Tax and other taxes such as employment taxes, environmental taxes and SDLT.  He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Taxation.

Ben’s clients include a number of Universities, and he has particular experience on land and property transactions through commercial subsidiaries, joint ventures with the private sector and projects with multiple stakeholders.

He also has specific experience in relation to the externalisation of services and assets by public bodies and the carrying out of business activities - primarily in advising on tax issues, but also in advising on financial and strategic issues as well.  He understands the need for tax considerations to be built into any project from the beginning and the need for a clear dialogue with HMRC.