About CUBO

CUBO is the professional association for senior managers in higher education whose responsibilities include the strategic development, management and administration of an institution's commercial business. Whether run in-house or outsourced at its core this includes the:

  • Residential portfolio
  • Catering and retail operation
  • Conference facility which also encapsulates business and leisure tourism.

Members may also have responsibility for a wide variety of other activities including sport, security, printing, transport, cleaning, childcare, retail, customer services, maintenance or even running the whole estate. In these areas members have direct contact with most of the of the HE student population and in 2011 generated revenues in excess of £1.4 billion.

CUBO members are drawn from senior levels at the majority of UK Higher Education institutions. They are professionals in senior positions reporting mainly to a University senior officer such as the Principal or Vice-Chancellor, Secretary or Registrar.

Institutions from Ireland and one private university count among the membership. CUBO has links to many Higher Education associations and organisations and internationally there are links to equivalent organisations in the United States, Canada, Australasia and South Africa.

Strategic Aims​


  • Supporting members to deliver excellence 
  • Rewarding innovation and championing best practice


  • Influencing policy and decision-making
  • Leading the way on new initiatives


  • Connecting members to resources and partners
  • Creating an effective network across the sector and beyond


  • Personal development and knowledge sharing.
  • Professional skills training

​CUBO supports our members in their goal to provide an outstanding student experience.


CUBO Structure

In 2017 CUBO changed from being an association of members to a company limited by guarantee.  The change followed an extensive strategic review in 2016. The company now has members who act as guarantors and the institutions who are members of CUBO are its guarantors.

Find out more about the strategic review

Read the Articles of Association

The company has a board of directors and newly recruited Chief Executive. 

Meet the team


CUBO Activities


  • Two national conferences each year
  • Professional development programme
  • National membership networks
  • Use of fast track members surveys
  • Production of CUBO Performance Indicators
  • CUBO commissioned research reports
  • Liaison with UK Funding Councils and Universities UK
  • Liaison with relevant stakeholder groups
  • Liaison with international partners

Executive Terms of Reference

  • To develop, implement and review CUBO's strategic themes
  • To develop, maintain and evaluate agreed activity plans for CUBO in support of each strategic theme
  • To formulate and monitor CUBO's planning, operational, staffing and financial performance through an effective management approach
  • To promote and ensure an effective interface with the rest of the sector and its stakeholders
  • To implement, develop and evaluate an effective system of performance measurement
  • To inform members about service and business developments
  • To approve applications for expenditure
  • To ensure appropriate control procedures are in place
  • To ensure effective communication processes are in place