Universities, enterprise, exports and innovation: MillionPlus Submission to the Autumn Statement

15 Nov 2016

The education sector generated £98.3bn gross value added to the UK economy, just over 6% of the total. Higher education makes up around 40% of this across each region of the UK, based on 2014/15 figures.

A 2013 report produced for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills showed that education exports were £17.5bn per year.  A report from the Institute of Fiscal Studies in August 2016 calculated HE exports as being worth £10.5bn to the UK economy each year.  Universities UK calculated that in 2011-12 the HE sector generated over £73bn of output – nearly 3% of total UK GDP – and accounted for nearly 3% of all UK employment.

MillionPlus believes that the autumn statement should be used to build on these strengths but also take account of the risks to the sector in the transition to Brexit

Specifically, the Autumn Statement should be used to provide investment so that the government can achieve the following:

  • provide EU students entering universities in England in the admissions years 2018-19 and 2019-20 with access to student loan funding for the duration of their course on the same terms and conditions as apply to home students
  • increased investment in research and development to ensure the overall UK funding resource reaches 2.5% as a percentage of GDP by the end of the parliament
  • a new fund for applied and translational research to support innovation in businesses, SMEs and public services and boost economic growth across the country
  • targeted regional funding to support collaboration between universities and businesses or public services
  • funding for projects that are currently supported by EU structural funds
  • additional capital investment in teaching infrastructure and facilities to achieve a target of £150m per year over the life of the current parliament 
  • tax breaks for employers to support investment in upskilling and professional development to complement the support provided for apprenticeships including degree apprenticeships
  • new ring-fenced funding for placements and continuous professional development to support the training and professional development of nursing, midwifery and allied health professional students and staff already in the workforce
  • multi-year allocations of places for initial teacher training (ITT) to all universities which deliver teacher education to ensure that provision is sustainable and can be planned to effectively meet local and national needs for new teachers and secure future teacher supply
  • new funding for professional development for teachers at all level of their careers to support retention and collaboration with university education departments
  • a new funding initiative to boost the engagement of all UK universities in the global HE market

Download Universities, enterprise, exports and innovation »