08 Dec 2016
Leaving the EU will have profound consequences for UK higher education: EU staff and students make enormous contributions to the UK; academically, culturally and economically. The wider impact of the trade in HE services and research and the role of universities in supporting European Structural Fund projects should also be taken into account by government.
UK higher education is well-regarded throughout the world. Seeking to differentiate the sector, or to create a hostile atmosphere for staff or students from the EU or beyond has the potential to impact negatively on this global reputation and hand advantage to the UK’s direct competitors.
The government should seek to explore and negotiate options by which trade with the EU in respect of HE and research can be maintained with as few restrictions and barriers as possible. In addition, it will be crucial for Ministers to put in place transitional arrangements to ensure that UK universities can continue to access this market during Brexit negotiations.