A New Future

HEDQF was established around twenty years ago as an initiative of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) in order to promote a stronger understanding of issues affecting its clients and to promote good design in a fast-changing sector with high public visibility and impact. In 2014 the Forum decided, with the encouragement of the RIBA, to become independent, though with strong support for particular projects and initiatives. 


A group of engaged university clients and interested companies committed themselves to become Founder Members in order to provide start-up funding and practical assistance to establish the new organization. These are acknowledged on our membership page and HEDQF is very grateful for their continued support.


HEDQF has recently established itself as a Charitable Company, number 1166552. The object of HEDQF is to advance higher education through high-quality design and planning of buildings and facilities.


HEDQF has a strong relationship with the Association of University Directors of Estates (AUDE) and has organised exhibitions, films and workshops at conferences, often with accompanying booklets (see the Resources section of this website.


As well as organising site visits, HEDQF has held a number of successful debates including the most recent at Oxford Brookes University on Designing Contemporary Buildings in Historic Settings, in partnership with Design Engine.


HEDQF has recently published a new book – Future Campus, Design Quality in Higher Education – edited by Ian Taylor (of Feilden Clegg Bradley) and published by the RIBA. The book was launched at the 2016 HEDQF Annual Conference, at the University of the Arts in London on 12 July 2016.


All members are encouraged to play an active role in the Forum and to suggest and organise themes for visits, debates and research.



The new organisation was registered as a company in 2015 and an application for charitable status has been successflly lodged with the Charity Commission (number 1166552). The new organisation is governed by a Board of Trustees, with a balance from higher education and the design/built environment  professions. 


Officers are: 


Chair: Professor Philip Ogden, Queen Mary University of London. 


Deputy Chairs: Julian Robinson, London School of Economics and Ian Goodfellow of Penoyre and Prasad.


Ian Caldwell from King’s College London is Past Chair and current Chair of the Events and Conference Committee. A number of officers and sub-committees take particular responsibility for Membership (Tom Alexander of Aukett Swanke), Finance (Simon Fraser of Fraser Brown MacKenna), and Research (Caroline Paradise of Atkins).    

Proposed Future Activities

Future activities are planned to build on successful activities of the past. HEDQF is involved in the AUDE Conference through the workshop on Design Competitions and our annual conference goes from strenth to strength following the 2016 event on 12 July at UAL, LondonOur third Annual Conference will be held at the University of Sheffield in July 2017.


Research themes are being developed and there is an appetite for research on innovation (looking forward) and lessons to be learnt (looking back) from projects in terms of student satisfaction, research and teaching outcomes and operational success over time, also perhaps looking at relevant parallels in other sectors such as the Pharma Industry and high technology companies.


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