Alistair Jarvis

Alistair Jarvis
Universities UK
Chief Executive

Alistair Jarvis was appointed Chief Executive of Universities UK in summer 2017.

Leading the representative body for the UK’s 140 universities, his primary focus is on influencing policy, political engagement, relationships with members and organisational leadership.
Universities UK (UUK) is a both a company limited by guarantee and a registered charity. In addition to the core membership body, six smaller subsidiary or related charities and companies are part of the UUK Group.
He has been a member of the senior management team at UUK since 2013, previously as Deputy Chief Executive and Director of External Relations.
Before joining UUK, he was a Director at the University of Birmingham and has previously held communications, campaigning and political relations roles for national organisations in both the public and private sectors.
Alistair has been a member of government taskforces focused on research and knowledge exchange sustainability; EU exit and universities; and addressing the challenges of Covid-19 for universities.
He has previously held voluntary roles as Deputy Chair of the board of Wonkhe, a higher education policy media company; a member of the Financial Services Skills Taskforce; a steering group member for the Industrial Strategy Council prosperity mapping project; as a Commissioner of the UPP Civic Universities Commission; and a member of the judging panel for the Times Higher and Guardian University Awards.
He was educated at the Universities of Kent, Leicester and the Institute of Education, UCL​. Alistair is a fellow of the RSA.

Recent media​

The growing challenges facing USS - HEPI, 4 March 2021

Students should apply for university next year with confidence - The Times, 12 October 2020

History tells us now is a good time to go to university - City AM, 18 August 2020

Universities face a financial storm - that's why we need government help - The Guardian, 10 April 2020

Universities are responding magnificently to Covid-19 challenges - Wonkhe, 29 March 2020

To help 'left behind' Britain, more adults need to feel able to go to university - The Guardian, 2 March 2020

A message to Boris:help us to unleash the full potential of UK universities - Times Higher Education, 19 December 2019

The UK government should back the public by welcoming skilled migration - Times Higher Education, 10 December 2019

Students and the public must have confidence in university admissions - The Times, 22 July 2019

It’s time to supercharge degree apprenticeships - Wonkhe, 15 July 2019

The Augar Report- the good, the risks and the challenges - APPG, 2 July 2019 

Profile: Universities UK’s chief executive, Alistair Jarvis - University Business, 2 May 2019

Augar’s recommendations must be judged on how they benefit Britain - Wonkhe, 4 March 2019

Leaving the EU with no deal would lay waste to British universities - The Times, 13 November 2018

Cut university fees and risk putting a cap on aspiration - Evening Standard, 7 November 2018

University expansion must not be held back by its elitist regressive critics – The Telegraph, 6 August 2018

Universities UK chief Alistair Jarvis: union’s pension demands will cost £1bn a year​ – The Times, 18 March 2018

Uni strikes risk students' learning - a new pension deal could stop teaching, jobs and research cuts –The i, 23 February 2018

Disruption to students is regrettable but we must not become the latest high-profile pension scheme to fail – Telegraph, 22 February 2018

May's review on tuition fees beats a knee-jerk policy change due to political pressure – Huffington Post, 19 February 2018

There is only so much uncertainty universities can take –​ The Guardian, 12 February 2018


Covid vaccine sticker UK

Student vaccination – a sector statement

28 July 2021
​University leaders are encouraging new and existing students to take up the opportunity to get fully vaccinated as soon as possible.

Students studying in a library

Universities offering support through results season

22 July 2021
University leaders say their institutions are ready to help the growing number of students applying to university this summer and that students should continue to be ambitious with their study choices.