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Arts and Humanities: Higher Education

Question for Department for Education

UIN HL1731, tabled on 13 July 2022

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure sufficient funding for arts and humanities subjects in higher education in the (1) short, and (2) long, term; and what assessment they have made of (a) the potential shortfall in funding after the cessation of funding from the European Research Council ceases, and (b) general pressures on funding for arts and humanities subjects in higher education.

Answered on

27 July 2022

The government recognises the importance of the creative arts to the economy and the UK’s soft power. High-quality provision in a range of subjects is critical for our workforce and our public services and is culturally-enriching for our society.

For the 2022/23 academic year, the Office for Students has increased the high-cost subject funding rate per student for performing and creative arts and media studies to £125.76, a rise of 3.51%, and for archaeology to £264.50, a rise of 4.75%, from the previous year. The department has also increased funding for world-leading specialist providers, including 11 providers specialising in the arts, by an additional £5 million in the 2022/23 financial year, on top of the increase of £10 million provided in the 2021/22 financial year. The department wants to ensure that such providers receive additional support, and that grant funding is used effectively to support students, including those with an interest in the cultural and creative sectors.

UK Research and Innovation is also providing significant investment over the current Spending Review period, with funding for the Arts and Humanities Research Council totalling £207 million for the 2022/23 to 2024/25 financial years.

Research England has published its funding decisions for university research and knowledge exchange, expected to be £8 billion over the Spending Review period. Proportional allocations across disciplinary areas have been maintained, recognising the significant contribution to culture and quality of life from the arts and humanities.