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Universities boost private and public sectors

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A report published today by Universities UK reveals the extent to which universities are boosting the economy, regional growth and jobs.

The report, The Economic Role of UK Universities, highlights how universities increase skills, support innovation and attract investment and talent.

The report, the sixth in the Funding Environment series, emphasises how higher education is a high-growth UK export industry in its own right. In 2011-12, universities generated over £73 billion of output and contributed over £39.9 billion to UK.

Key findings from the report include:

  • Universities ensure that the UK remains competitive in the global market by supporting greater business innovation and export-led, knowledge-intensive growth
  •  Universities play an important part in responding to skill needs as the shape of the workforce changes
  • Universities create prosperity in their local areas, contributing to regional growth, jobs, investment and community wellbeing
  • Universities anticipate future needs, help to shape policy and drive research and innovation to enhance efficiency and effectiveness

Dame Julia Goodfellow, Chair of UUK's submission to the 2015 spending review and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kent, said: “Universities are a fundamental part of the UK economy and play a key role in ensuring that the UK remains globally competitive.

“The UK must ensure that the higher-level skills required in the labour market are met and our universities have an important role to play in meeting this demand, both through their more traditional model of three-year undergraduate university study, and by developing other routes  to higher skills.

“Universities are a globally recognised source of innovation and research and, in turn, attract direct foreign investment. They generate knowledge and discovery that can boost both the private and the public sectors.”

Key Contacts

Gareth Morgan

Gareth Morgan

Media Relations Manager
Universities UK

Clara Plackett

Clara Plackett

Press and Social Media Officer
Universities UK


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