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Supply and demand for higher-level skills

Supply and demand for higher level skillsAs the UK economy edges out of recession and employment levels begin to rise, attention has increasingly shifted towards the supply of higher-level skills. Several commentators have argued that there are not only too many graduates but that that too few of them are prepared for the world of work.​

This report provides a general analysis of the supply and demand for higher-level skills. It asks whether there are too many or too few graduates, whether their subject choice is suited to future labour market requirements, and to what extent they are lacking the general employability, practical and technical skills required by a modern knowledge economy. 



Its findings include:​​

  • Projecting to 2022, under most models, there will be an undersupply of graduates, relative to the number of jobs demanding them.

  • There will be unmet demand for workers with higher, but not necessarily degree-level, qualifications, such as HNDs.

  • There is no widely agreed-upon definition of a 'graduate jo​b'.

  • There must be greater discussion between universities and employers about 'employability skills'.

  • There will be a need for greater collaboration between further and higher education to develop workers with higher level skills.

  • In spite of a strong supply of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) students, there are continued shortages of highly-qualified workers in technical industries.​

   

 

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The team

James Ransom

James Ransom

Policy Researcher
Universities UK

Greg Wade

Greg Wade

Programme Manager
Universities UK

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