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Procurement in higher education

Higher education building

Higher education institutions have a hugely diverse and complex portfolio of contracts with suppliers of goods and services, all of which need to be awarded and managed in a way that demonstrates value for money as well as supporting the strategic aims of the institution. The UK and EU procurement regimes are both highly complex and heavily regulated and higher education institutions can ill afford to make costly and time-consuming mistakes. Having experience acting for both bidders and contracting authorities, we understand the world of public procurement from all sides.

From specific aspects such as drafting of a contract to accompany an invitation to tender, through to managing the whole procurement process, advising on procurement strategy and resolving disputes, we will ensure you receive pragmatic advice and solutions that are both legally and commercially sound and add value to your own contracts and procurement teams.

What we offer

  • Advice on all aspects of a public procurement exercise, including commercial and legal advice on structuring and running procurement exercises, dealing with challenges and advising on compliant joint venture and collaboration structures.
  • Advice on public procurement strategies, policies and processes.
  • Review tender documents, draft contracts and ensure appropriate documentation use throughout the procurement process.
  • Advice on the management of clarification questions.
  • Undertake comprehensive evaluations of a tender.

Why choose Browne Jacobson higher education lawyers?

Our procurement team has extensive experience advising on all aspects of procurement, providing solutions that are proportionate, practical and soundly based on our extensive understanding of this complex area of law. For more information, please contact Anja Beriro.

Recent experience

  • Advising several central government departments on outsourcing arrangements for IT functions, each contract being worth more than £100 million.

  • Taking a construction client all the way through a tender process to successful bidder for provision of new student accommodation for a large city-based university.

  • Carrying out an in-depth procurement review in relation to a significant building project at a higher education institution.

  • Supporting a client acting as a central purchasing body set up a number of dynamic purchasing systems to provide supplies and services to local authorities, education institutes and health bodies worth over £300million.

What the directories say...



It demonstrates strong capabilities in procurement challenges and judicial reviews….

Legal 500 2019


Browne Jacobson LLP impresses with its ‘excellent service level’ and is known for its expertise in the areas of planning and commercial law, in particular State aid and procurement...

Legal 500 2018

Focus on...

Legal updates

be connected newsletter for higher education - July 2021

In this edition we provide you with the latest in legal updates, news and insight from the higher education sector.

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Legal updates

Lifting of restrictions - what this means for employers in the higher education sector

19 July 2021 marked the lifting of many restrictions within England including the cessation of the need for social distancing, the removal of the legal requirement for face masks, and the end of required homeworking. We look at the guidance on the lifting of restrictions in the context of staff working in the higher education sector.

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Legal updates

Steps to take following a data breach: reporting, criminal charges and injunctions

Student and staff files will be full of personal data, much of which may be particularly sensitive such as health information (known under the data protection legislation as “special category” data).

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Legal updates

Long Covid

As HR teams in the Higher Education sector plan for the staffing implications of the return of students to university, they are also having to deal with the relatively new condition known as long Covid.

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