Welcome to ICAEW’s Academia & Education Community

I am delighted to introduce this new online platform for members and non-members with an interest in academia to connect and share insight around accountancy education, lifelong learning and research. As the first ever academic to take on the role of ICAEW President, this is a topic particularly close to my heart and I look forward to seeing this community flourish and develop over time.

The accountancy profession faces many challenges, not least when it comes to technology. In such a changing environment, learning becomes increasingly important. We need to keep our knowledge and skills up-to-date and ensure that we are able to adapt to our changing circumstances. But what more do we need to do and just what does lifelong learning mean in practice today?

That was the topic I explored in my doctoral thesis. I came to a deceptively simple solution: lifelong learning is about being proactive, about making the most of opportunities that present themselves. That is why I chose adaptability as one of two themes that I am promoting during my year as President. In this fast changing world, the concept applies as much to ICAEW as it does to our members.

My second theme is inclusivity. This forum is part of the work we do to create connected communities for our members around the world and ensure that all members feel included in ICAEW’s activities. The community will promote closer relations and collaboration between members and professionals in academia and facilitate discussions around how teaching methods and materials ought to adapt to ensure that students are equipped with the skills they need to succeed as future professionals.

I would love to hear about how you, as a member of this community, would like to use this platform and what topics you would like to discuss. Please feel free to leave a comment below or ask the community a question yourself here in our open forum.

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  • Great to see the community up and running. I'm not a member in academia but have an interest in education, our qualification and employability in general.

    I was intrigued by yesterday's interview with Mary Curnock Cook, the soon to be ex-Head of Ucas. The headline that "students should not worry about finding a job while studying for their degree" was certainly striking.  www.bbc.co.uk/.../education-39704603

    However one of the points she made was consistent with Hilary's theme of lifelong learning, in that students should be reassured that it may take a few years and several jobs to find their niche - i.e. that moving between roles was certainly not a 'bad' thing. All of the interesting fellow Chartered Accountants I know (is there indeed any other sort?!) have had quite a meandering career journey which I think is a strength.

    Having said that, I'd still encourage students to use the time and resources they have at college to find out about what they may or may not want to do afterwards.

    Looking forward to seeing where this community takes us!

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