MR. RICHARD YELLAND has been Head of the Programme on Institutional Management in Higher Education (IMHE) of the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) since April 1998. From January 1997 to March 1998 Richard was seconded to the University of Adelaide. He joined OECD in 1986 from the then Department of Education and Science in the United Kingdom where he held a range of posts in educational policy and administration. At OECD he has been Head of the Programme of Educational Building since 1989 and combines this responsibility with that for IMHE. He is a member of the Advisory Board of the UNESCO Centre for European Higher Education (CEPES).
My work is with the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, on the management of policy concerning higher education. We are an inter-governmental organisation and we try to listen and communicate as much as we can with business, and with the social partners, as part of our consultative process. The title of this session refers to that mythical beast, The University. I confess I find it more and more difficult to sustain the idea that all universities share common characteristics, still less identities or missions. John Tod has just sketched out very briefly a fascinating example of new university collaboration.