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Steve Woodfield

Senior researcher (higher education policy and management)


Steve Woodfield is a Senior Researcher in the Higher Education Policy and Management Research Group. Steve has 16 years experience in the design, management and application of socio-economic, educational, business and consumer research projects. He joined Kingston University in 2007 after spending five years as a Research Fellow in the Centre for Policy and Change in Tertiary Education at the University of Surrey. Steve has also worked in the market research sector, and as a researcher in medical education at King's College London.

Steve's current research focuses mainly on:

  • internationalisation in higher education (particularly international student mobility; international partnerships and networks; quality assurance; international strategy development; and measuring institutional internationalisation);
  • leadership, management and governance in UK higher education; and
  • other broader UK higher education policy issues.

He has recently been involved in a variety of projects focused on the impact of internationalisation on policy and institutional practice in higher education for sponsors including UUK, the Higher Education Academy, UNESCO, the British Council and Million+.  Steve has also been involved in a range of research and consultancy projects for the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education (LFHE), including work on senior managers and top management teams. He also undertakes policy research for a range of UK higher education stakeholders, and his most recent research focused on the role of private providers in UK higher education (for UUK).

Follow Steve on Twitter: @sjwku




Year gained Subject
2010 - MPhil/PhD, Institute of Education, Multi-institutional International Strategic Alliances in UK Higher Education: the role of institutional strategy.
1997 - 1999 MA Applied Social and Market Research, University of Westminster.
1993 - 1994 MA Political Philosophy (The Idea of Toleration), University of York.
1990 - 1993 BA (Hons) Politics, University of Hull.

Career Highlights

Year Position held
2007 - Senior Researcher (Higher Education Policy and Management), Vice-Chancellors Office.
2002 - 2007 Research Fellow, Centre for Policy and Change in Tertiary Education, University of Surrey.
2000 - 2002 Senior Research Executive, Enteleca Research and Consultancy Ltd, Richmond, Surrey.
1999 - 2000 Research Executive, Research International (Consumer Division), London.
1995 - 1998 Research Assistant/Project Administrator, Guy's, King's and St Thomas' School of Medicine, London.


1.     Curtis G, Woodfield S, Middlehurst R (2012) Market forces, government agency and key disciplines: learning from international experience. A report to HEFCE. Bristol: HEFCE.

2.     Hawtin R, Woodfield S, Ramsden P, Curtis G (2011) Evaluation of HEFCE's programme of support for Strategically Important and Vulnerable Subjects (SIVS). A report to HEFCE. Bristol: HEFCE.

3.     Woodfield S, Fielden J and Middlehurst R (2011) 'Working together: Partnerships between publicly funded HEIs and 'private providers' in the UK' Perspectives: Policy and Practice in Higher Education, 15 (20), pp.45-52.

4.     Middlehurst R, Woodfield S, and Hjerde A (2011) International Higher Education: Missing an Opportunity? London: Million+.

5.     Woodfield S (2010) 'Europe: Regional Perspective' In: IAU. Internationalization of Higher Education: Global Trends, Regional Perspectives. IAU 3rd Global Survey Report. Paris: IAU.

6.     Woodfield S (2010) 'Key Trends and Emerging Issues in International Student Mobility (ISM)' In: Maringe, F. and Foskett, N. (Editors). Globalisation and internationalisation of higher education: theoretical, strategic and management perspectives. London, Continuum, pp. 109-123.

7.     Middlehurst R, Kennie, T and Woodfield S (2010), 'Leading and Managing the University - Presidents and their Senior Management Team; In: Peterson P, Baker E, McGaw B (Editors). International Encyclopedia of Education, Volume 4, pp. 238-244.Oxford: Elsevier.

8.     Fielden J, Middlehurst R and Woodfield S (2010). The growth of private and for-profit higher education providers in the UK. London: Universities UK:

9.     Woodfield, S (2009). Trends in International Student Mobility: A Comparison of National and Institutional Policy: Responses in Denmark, Germany, Sweden and the Netherlands. København: Danish Agency for International Education.

10.   Middlehurst R, Goreham H, and Woodfield S (2009). 'Why research leadership in higher education?  Exploring contributions from the UK's Leadership Foundation for Higher Education'. Leadership (Special Issue: Leadership in Higher Education: Facts, Fictions and Futures), 5(3), pp. 311-329.

11.   The Observatory on Borderless Higher Education (Becker R, Lasanowski V, Goreham, H, and Olcott Jnr. D) and Kingston University (Woodfield S and Middlehurst R) (2009). An Analysis of National and Institutional Approaches for Attracting International Students and Facilitating Internationalisation in the United Kingdom and Selected European Countries. London. UK Higher Education Europe and International Units.

12.   Woodfield S, Middlehurst R and Fielden J (2009). Universities and international higher education partnerships: making a difference. London: Million+.

13.   Woodfield S (2008). Review of UK-US Higher Education Partnerships: Desk Research. A research report to the British Council (British Council internal publication).

14.   Woodfield S and Kennie T (2008). 'Teamwork' or 'Working as a Team'? The Theory and Practice of Top Team Working in UK Higher Education'. Higher Education Quarterly, 62(4), pp 397-415.

15.   Kennie T and Woodfield S (2008). The Composition, Challenges and Changes in the Top Team Structures of UK Higher Education Institutions. London: The Leadership Foundation for Higher Education.

16.   Woodfield S and Kennie T (2007). 'Top team structures in UK higher education institutions: composition, challenges and changes'. Tertiary Education and Management, 13 (4), pp.331-348.

17.   Woodfield S (2007). 'UK Institutional Responses to the Internationalisation Agenda'. International Higher Education, 48 (Summer 2007), pp.6-7.

18.   Middlehurst R and Woodfield S (2007). 'International activity or internationalisation strategy?  Insights from an institutional pilot study in the UK'. Tertiary Education and Management, 13(3), pp.263 - 279.

19.   Fielden J, Middlehurst R, and Woodfield S (2007). Global Horizons for UK students: A guide for universities. London: The Council for Industry and Higher Education.

20.   Middlehurst R and Woodfield S (January 2007). Responding to the internationalisation agenda: Implications for institutional strategy and practice. York: Higher Education Academy.

21.   Middlehurst RM and Woodfield S (2006) 'Quality Review in Distance Learning:  Policy and Practice in Five Countries', Tertiary Education and Management, Spring 2006, 12 (1) pp 37-58.

22.   Middlehurst R and Woodfield S (2004). International Quality Review and Distance Learning: Lessons from Five Countries. Occasional Paper for the Council for Higher Education Accreditation's International Commission. Washington: CHEA.

23.   Middlehurst R and Woodfield S (2004). The Role of Transnational, Private, and For-Profit Provision in Meeting Global Demand for Tertiary Education: Mapping, Regulation and Impact. Summary Report for the Commonwealth of Learning and UNESCO.

24.   The Centre for Policy and Change in Tertiary Education at the University Of Surrey and the Observatory on Borderless Higher Education (2003). 'Redesigning Teaching and Learning in Higher Education Using ICT: Balancing Quality, Access & Cost - A Study of the US Pew Grant Program In Course Redesign and its Potential for UK Higher Education'. A Report to the Department for Education & Skills.

25.   McNair S, Humphreys C, Woodfield S, Owen, L. 'Changing Work in Later Life: Setting an Agenda''. Centre for Research into the Older Workforce (CROW), University of Surrey, 2003.

26.   Seabrook MA, Woodfield SJ, Papagiroriadis S, Rennie JA, Atherton A, Lawson M (2000) 'Consistency of teaching in parallel surgical firms: an audit of student experience at one medical school'. Medical Education, 34, pp. 292-298.

27.   Woodfield SJ, Seabrook MA, Lempp H. 'Rhetoric and reality: two perspectives on community trusts' involvement in undergraduate medical education'. Medical Teacher 1999, 21, pp. 166-169.

28.   Lempp H, Woodfield S, Wilson A, Stacey R. (1999).'Nurses in academic departments of general practice and primary care.' British Journal of Nursing, 8(1), pp. 51-54.

29.   Lempp, H, Seabrook M, Woodfield S. (1999). 'Increasing Community-based Learning in a Medical Curriculum through Electives: A preliminary report'. Education for Health, 12(1), pp. 39-47.

30.   Lempp H, Woodfield SJ, Wilson A, Stacey R. 'Professional development: a national survey of nurses working in academic Departments of General Practice & Primary Care'. British Journal of Nursing 1999, 8 (1), pp.51-54.

31.   Graham HJ, Seabrook MA, Woodfield SJ. 'Structured packs for independent learning: a comparison of learning outcomes and acceptability with conventional teaching'. Medical Education 1999; 33, pp.579-584.

32.   Seabrook MA, Lempp H, Woodfield SJ. 'Extending community involvement in the medical curriculum: lessons from a case study'. Medical Education 1999; 33, pp.838-845.

33.   Seabrook MA, Lawson M, Woodfield S, Baskerville PA. 'Undergraduate teaching in a day surgery unit: a two-year evaluation'. Medical Education 1998, 32, pp.298-303.

34.   Seabrook MA, Lempp H, Woodfield SJ. Extending community involvement in medical education: a guide. Dept. of General Practice and Primary Care, Guy's, King's and St Thomas' School of Medicine 1998.

35.   Lempp, H, Woodfield SJ, Seabrook MA. 'Class act: is medical training keeping pace with the drive to make health service less hospital orientated?' Health Service Journal 5th December 1996.

Media Highlights

Steve has done numerous interviews with the media, including speaking to the Times Higher Education supplement and the Guardian, as well as international journals such as the Chronicle of HE and L'Etudiant. He has also written a number of articles for higher education journals and reports for research sponsors.


Conference Highlights

Steve is a seasoned conference speaker. He is also a regular contributor to the British Council's Going Global conference, as well as annual conferences by a range of HE research organisations including SRHE, EAIR and HEIR.

Professional Body Membership

  • Association of University Administrators (AUA)
  • Society for Research into Higher Education (SRHE)
  • The European Higher Education Society (EAIR)
  • The UK and Ireland Institutional Research Network (HEIR) (Steering Group Member)
  • Higher Education Academy
  • International Association of Universities.

Contact us

General enquiries:

Journalists only:

  • Communications team
    Tel: +44 (0)20 8417 3034
    Email us

Contact us

General enquiries:

Journalists only:

  • Communications team
    Tel: +44 (0)20 8417 3034
    Email us