Funded by: Higher Education Innovation Fund

Principal Investigators: Dr Chidiebere Ogbonnaya, Digit Co-lead and Senior Lecturer in Organisational Behaviour/Human Resource Management, University of Sussex

This research project will contribute towards our understanding of the interplay between further education (FE) and higher education (HE), and how pathways between them may be strengthened to provide social mobility and economic benefits to local populations.

Our proposed activity is a six month research inquiry led by parliamentarians and the Skills Commission to explore how careers guidance in England can be improved to support adults and young people (16+) in a difficult post-Covid-19 labour market. We seek to influence UK policy around career guidance, labour market shocks and Covid-19’s impact on graduate un/under-employment over the coming years.

Our goal is to create opportunities to enhance cross-party and cross-sectorial engagement and impact on the topic of career transitions and development. We will also identify scalable and transferable good practice, and develop recommendations for policy interventions appropriate for the new economic context.

The inquiry seeks to influence the following key policy agendas:

  • The renewal of the Department for Education’s 2017 Careers Strategy which runs to 2020 and necessary updates to this in light of Covid-19
  • Government responses to tackling unemployment amongst FE/HE leavers, which can be expected to be exacerbated by Covid-19
  • Government investment in quality career guidance provision