Jisc appoints Karen Foster to lead new data analytics directorate as executive director

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Jisc has announced a new appointment to its leadership team – Karen Foster. From 17 September, Karen will lead a new data analytics directorate as executive director.

Karen joins Jisc from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), with 22 members of her team. Jisc and HESA have a long-standing and successful relationship and the new directorate will build on existing services such as Heidi Plus and interactive insights to deliver business intelligence for HE providers, the public sector and charities.

Karen says:

“At a time when technology is ever more important in the delivery and management of education, our universities are increasingly realising the power of data-driven decision making. The new directorate will play a key role in providing higher education institutions with the information they need to enhance the student experience and meet business goals, now and into the future.

“I am delighted to be bringing together an experienced team of experts from across Jisc and HESA to deliver leading-edge products and services to higher education institutions. These services include a learning analytics solution that will enhance student teaching, learning and success, an upgraded UK HE data analytics service, and a centre for HE data and intelligence enabling data-driven business decisions.”

The integration of HESA’s data and analytics team into Jisc builds on the recommendations of the 2017 Bell Review for sector agency efficiency. HESA will continue to fulfil its role as the designated data body in England and in providing the collection, assurance and dissemination of data across the UK.