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Policy priorities to support universities to thrive post-exit

How can the government ensure universities are best placed to maximise their contribution to a successful and global UK post-EU exit? 

As the government looks to minimise turbulence and maximise the opportunities associated with leaving the EU, British universities have a vital role to play in creating a successful, dynamic and internationally competitive post-exit UK.

Universities are central to driving inclusive economic growth locally, regionally and nationally; improving productivity as part of the Industrial Strategy; and strengthening international trade and diplomatic relationships across Europe and the wider world.

This briefing sets out how the government can build on the momentum of the phase one and transition agreements and secure an effective post-Brexit settlement where universities can maximise their contribution to a globally-successful UK.

Without the government taking action, there are risks that: 

  • the UK higher education sector’s reputation as a collaborator of choice in vital research is weakened 

  • access to key funding mechanisms to support research excellence are lost

  • the UK will slip further behind competitors in sending students abroad as part of their degree

  • the UK will lose existing academic talent from the EU

  • universities will experience sudden, steep declines in EU student enrolments

  • universities’ activity to drive local growth and generate jobs will be hampered

To ensure that British universities can maximise their contribution to a successful, post-exit UK, the right support is needed from the government to address these concerns.

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