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Section highlightThe People’s NHS Part of an initiative to engage the public in creating a safe and sustainable health service for the future.
Spreading the word »Action on the ground to increase learning materials in the medium of Welsh.Learn more »
First Minister’s call for action on the Welsh language
People from across Wales with an interest in the Welsh language are being asked to take action on its future in a national online conversation.
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- First Minister’s call for action on the Welsh language
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Welsh languageWelsh-language technology and digital media action plan
The action plan sets out our commitment to drive developments in the field of Welsh-language technology and digital media.Learn more »
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Section highlightAccess to information
The Welsh Government has followed the principles of openness in government for many years. Find out how you can make a freedom of information request or see requests that have already been made.
The Strategy for Older People in Wales 2013-2023 »The 3rd phase focuses on ensuring that older people in Wales have the resources to deal with the challenges and opportunities they face.Learn more »
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Section highlightIndex of Planning Policy Guidance for Wales
Our land use planning policy guidance is set out in two core documents, "Planning Policy Wales" and "Minerals Planning Policy Wales".
Legislative programme 2012 - 2013 »
Addressing the Assembly in the Senedd today, the First Minister, Carwyn Jones, detailed the eight bills in the Welsh Government’s 5-year Legislative Programme that will be brought forward during the second year of the Welsh Assembly.Learn more »
Section highlightCommunity Infrastructure Levy
Local authorities can charge a Community Infrastructure Levy on new developments to support the infrastructure needed.
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Examples of infrastructure investment projects funded by the Welsh Government across Wales.Learn more »
Oral - Welsh Assembly Government’s response to the Merfyn Jones Higher Education Review
I wish to make a statement on phase two of the higher education review chaired by Professor Merfyn Jones, which considered the mission, purpose, role and funding of higher education in
The report builds on the demonstrable strengths of higher education in
As far as the promotion of a buoyant and sustainable economy is concerned, I welcome the report’s conclusions about the research and skills base of Wales. I want to see higher education raise its contribution to economic life and performance in Wales. Higher education must be the engine of prosperity through generating and exploiting knowledge and through the development of higher-level skills. I want our higher education community in Wales to be recognised for its commitment to work together to exploit its extensive expertise and influence. To this end, I have already agreed a joint strategic agenda with the Deputy First Minister, which includes our priorities for investment in research and development of most benefit to the Welsh economy.
The higher education community must also work in partnership with further education, employers and sector skills councils and take the steer from the Wales Employment and Skills Board if it is to provide the higher level skills we need in Wales, including a special focus on technician-level and management skills, and flexible ways of learning, including part-time and workplace provision. It must play a key role in the transformation agenda of post-16 provision. That links to the second benchmark for higher education—its promotion of social justice and the promotion of learning for all.
I want our higher education community to work in partnership with schools, further education colleges, employers and communities to offer young people and adult learners a wide choice of courses and pathways. That will embed and strengthen the kind of approaches to access that have been most successful to date, and it will make access and successful participation a reality for many more Welsh citizens.
This afternoon, I also wish to highlight four specific, critical priorities that will form a part of a new HE manifesto and agenda for Wales. First, Members will already be aware of our intention to develop a revised approach to a national bursary framework for Wales, which will send a message to new learners, young and old, to access and to succeed in higher education.
Secondly, I intend to consider and develop new ways of providing foundation degrees in Wales as a way of bridging our further and higher education sectors, to open wider and flexible opportunities for learners, and to develop higher-level skills for employment.
Thirdly, I am delighted to announce that we are now ready to begin funding new HE provision in the Heads of the Valleys in the coming academic year. That is exactly what I meant by a renewed effort to widen participation, which I hope will become a model of collaboration between HE and FE institutions to the benefit of local communities.
Finally, I express my full support for the collaborative model that is at the heart of Professor Robin Williams’s recommendations for taking forward the coleg ffederal to make a step change in Welsh-medium higher education provision. His report was also published on our website yesterday.
I intend to use existing Welsh Assembly Government funding for higher education and the additional revenues that will be available as a result of the first part of Professor Jones’s review to push forward those four priorities within the wider agenda for change that I am announcing today. We need to apply funding in ways that reinforce our determination to promote closer collaboration within and beyond the higher education sector, to increase choice and to reduce wasteful overlap and competition. We will use funding mechanisms to underscore that better sense of distinctive mission in different parts of the sector, particularly between those with an essentially research-focused mission and those with an emphasis on teaching and building higher-level skills. We will apply our funds in ways that support the future development of Wales through world-class research, commercialisation, investment in science, technology, engineering and mathematics subjects, and research that supports key devolved policy areas, such as health and education. That will be driven by the development of the national science academy, on which scoping work has taken place this year.
I also want to see higher education in Wales at the forefront of world-class research, investment, innovation and commercialisation that foster sustainable development, in line with our national ambitions, and that help the world to respond to climate change. Our strategic research and development objectives have been announced to provide that forum.
As well as supporting our ambition for economic success and social justice, higher education plays a crucial role in forming a world view of Wales, whether through participation by international students, academic collaboration across borders, interaction with global business, or partnership with overseas institutions. Our reputation in higher education and more generally as a nation demands that the highest-quality standards be maintained in all these activities.
My intention is to bring forward in the autumn an action plan for higher education in Wales. That will underpin our compact with higher education in Wales, with which we will engage to take this forward.
I thank Professor Jones and his team for all their hard work in providing a strong platform for the future development of higher education in Wales. We need a sector that has a unity of purpose and that is driven by the needs of our economy, social justice and the future of public services in a devolved Wales.