Invitation to Tender: Action Learning Sets Facilitator

University Alliance (UA) are looking for an agency/consultant/organisation to develop and facilitate Action Learning Sets for our Future Leaders Programme.

About University Alliance

University Alliance is a mission group within the higher education sector, uniting and championing the best professional and technical universities across the UK, enabling the knowledge and skills that we believe will power the UK’s future.

Alliance Universities are at the forefront of inclusive professional and technical higher education and lifelong learning. They share common values and support and challenge each other to continuously innovate in teaching and research to deliver ‘employment-ready’ graduates. They believe that universities should be accessible to all. They generate research with real-world application, champion their localities, and partner with local businesses, global industry and UK government to benefit the communities in which they’re rooted.

University Alliance provides the platform for Alliance Universities to act in partnership to achieve powerful outcomes for learners, employers, their communities and the UK economy. We provide the focal point for government, industry, media and others to access the knowledge, expertise, advice and resources of Alliance Universities.

Alliance Universities are proudly different and uniquely placed.

They hold close links with business and co-create innovative research that solves real-world challenges. But they also believe that universities should be open to all and, through their progressive teaching, equip the students they work with for the jobs of the future and the skills to help their communities prosper.

All Alliance universities share a unique set of qualities, they are all:


University Alliance runs a Future Leaders Programme for senior leaders (Deputy Vice-Chancellors, Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors) within its membership. The programme is made up of two phases:

  1. Participants and their sponsors (Vice-Chancellors) take part in an immersive experience outside of the UK – this year participants went to Apple HQ in Cupertino, California for 4 days
  2. Future Leaders will take part in a programme of visits to each of their institutions. Meetings will focus on a specific topic/theme, an introduction and overview of the host University, followed by an action learning set made up of participants and will include an overnight stay and dinner.

The requirement: what we want from an agency/consultant/organisation

We will be running Phase 2 of the programme in the 22/23 academic year and are looking for an agency/consultant/organisation to develop and facilitate Action Learning Sets addressing some of the ‘wicked problems’ facing the sector.

We would like the agency/consultant/organisation to deliver up to 6 Action Learning Sets over the academic year 22/23. Topics are to be agreed – suggestions include:

Our members are based across the UK so the successful agency/consultant/organisation would need to be able travel to these locations to deliver the Action Learning Sets in-person.

We are looking for an agency/consultant/organisation that has experience/understanding of:

How to apply

Bidders must submit an electronic copy of their tender submission no later than 12pm on Friday 5th August to with the subject line:  ITT Action Learning Sets Facilitator.

Tender process

In submissions, bidders should detail:

The contract for the successful provider will be with University Alliance, for 12 months running from September 2022 to September 2023.

Value of contract: £900 (inclusive of VAT and all expenses) for each action learning set delivered (minimum of 4, maximum of 6)

It is our preference to pay for each action learning set after delivery.

In calculating project overheads account should be taken of the fact that University Alliance is a non-profit making body.

If any person has an interest or connection with University Alliance, please provide that person’s full name, position, and the nature of the connection/interest with University Alliance.


Project Timeline

Find the criteria for the evaluation of bids and a timeline here. 

The information contained in this ITT and all other information made in connection with the project by University Alliance and UA’s member universities is supplied on the basis that such information will be used only for the purposes of participating in the bidding process and delivering the project. Information supplied by agencies as part of the tender process will also be treated with confidentiality.

If you have any questions regarding the tender or this work, please contact Isabel Spence