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Mr Tom Phillips

Honorary Senior Fellow

Director, Soutenir Ltd

Tom Phillips is Director of Soutenir Ltd, an international consulting and project services company. His experience in and around higher education spans 40 years in institutions, educational and professional organisations, and consultancy, dealing with diverse topics — student recruitment, admissions, and advising; research on student retention and performance; international student affairs and exchange; self-assessment, accreditation and quality management; and more recently, EU-funded capacity-building projects in quality assurance. Tom’s special interests relate to the comparability of quality assurance (QA) and accreditation systems; development of standards, evaluation criteria, and processes; quality assurance policy; the role of QA agencies as surrogates of government; and the behavioral context of accreditation. During 2010 Tom served as Instructor/Mentor for the LH Martin Institute's Graduate Certificate in Quality Assurance unit on 'External Quality Assurance'.

Tom is well-acquainted with engineering education, having been Director of Admissions at Columbia University School of Engineering and Project Officer at the Accreditation Board for Engineering & Technology (ABET). He served as a Policy Advisor to the Rector of the University of Twente, as a project consultant at CHEPS, the Center for Higher Education Policy Studies, and as an accreditation consultant to the Dutch Ministry of Education and the Roosevelt Academy (Utrecht University), all in the Netherlands. His international QA project experience includes development and evaluation missions in a number of European countries. In 2011, Tom will be working on an EU-funded evaluation of sustainability as an element of European engineering education at masters level.

Much of Tom’s written output relates to specific projects and conferences. His more significant publications include: QUESTE-VET — Quality System for European Scientific & Technical Education, EFMD Brussels, 2008; the QUESTE Dimensions & Evaluation Compass, Paris, 2006-2008, brochures and web content for the CHEPS/University of Pennsylvania HE Executive Program, Enschede NL, 2003; Mechanical Engineering Careers, American Society of Mechanical Engineers & Sloan Foundation, New York, 1998; International Perspectives: Engineering Education in North America, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific Region (CD-ROM) and North American Engineering Exchange Guide, USDE/FIPSE, Washington DC, 1994-98; Dutch Engineering Education in a European Context, (co-author) ABET/ CHEPS/ MINOCW, 1993; and Engineering Student Achievement & Retention Profile, ABET, Exxon Foundation, New York, 1992.