Universities remain an economic force for the region

12 June 2015

A new report confirms the importance of the universities of Kent and Canterbury Christ Church to the economies of Canterbury, Medway and Kent.

Amongst the key findings, the report, which covers the academic and financial year 2012/13, shows that overall the two universities’ activities, including student expenditure off campus, generated over £1.25 billion of output and nearly 13,200 jobs in the South East region.

It also shows that international students spent an estimated £72 million off campus with students recruited from other parts of the UK spending a further £184 million off campus.

The Canterbury Christ Church/Kent report is underpinned by findings published by Universities UK (UUK) which reaffirms the fundamental role higher education institutes play in the national economy. Published on 11 June, the UUK publication announced that in 2011-12 universities generated over £73 billion of output and contributed over £39.9 billion to the UK.

Other key findings from the Canterbury Christ Church/Kent report show that: 

  • Together both universities are amongst the biggest employers in the area, directly providing 4563 full-time-equivalent (FTE) jobs - equivalent to nearly 8% of all employee jobs in Canterbury
  • The universities spent nearly £305 million in 2012/13. Through secondary or ‘knock-on’ effects this generated around £365 million of output and 3741 jobs for the south east region
  • The expenditure of international students together with that of students from the rest of the UK created around 2659 jobs in the South East and generated nearly £306 million of output
  • 17,122 local (South East domiciled) students spent an estimated £206 million off-campus, generating over £255 million of output in South East industries and around 2221 local jobs. The expenditure of local students was also significant in that it represents monies retained within the local area, rather than being lost to the region if the students were to study elsewhere.

Professor Rama Thirunamachandran, Vice-Chancellor and Principal of Canterbury Christ Church University, said: "Both universities, and their students, have a major impact on the economic prosperity of Kent and Medway. This impact extends beyond the millions of pounds spent in the region each year, with our students and staff contributing significantly to the local and national knowledge economy through pioneering research, graduate skills and innovation, and student volunteering and industry placements. This mix of engagement and impact demonstrates the enormous value of universities today, and their important role in society."

Professor Dame Julia Goodfellow, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Kent, commented: "Universities are a fundamental part of the UK economy and play a key role in ensuring that the UK remains globally competitive. They also have an important role to play at the regional and local levels where they boost the economy, stimulate regional growth and innovation, and directly and indirectly create jobs across a range of industries and sectors. Together, the University of Kent and Canterbury Christ Church University are proud of the roles they play within our region, and the many contributions made by our students and staff."  

The Canterbury Christ Church/Kent report was produced by ViewForth Consulting Ltd.

Notes to Editor

For further information contact:

Gary Hughes, University of Kent, 01227 823100 / g.m.hughes@kent.ac.uk

Jeanette Earl, Canterbury Christ Church University, 01227 782391 / jeanette.earl@canterbury.ac.uk

Canterbury Christ Church University

Canterbury Christ Church University is a modern university with a particular strength in higher education for the public services.

With almost 18,000 students across Kent and Medway, its courses span a wide range of academic and professional subject areas.

  • 97% of our UK graduates were in employment or further studies six months after completing their studies*.
  • We are the number one choice for local people looking to study at university in Kent (2013 UCAS).
  • We are one of the South East’s largest providers of education, training and skills leading to public service careers.

*2012/13 Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey

University of Kent

Established in 1965, the University of Kent – the UK’s European university – now has almost 20,000 students across campuses or study centres at Canterbury, Medway, Tonbridge, Brussels, Paris, Athens and Rome.

Kent has been ranked: third for overall student satisfaction in the 2014 National Student Survey; 16th in the Guardian University Guide 2016; 28th in the Sunday Times University League Table 2013; and 22nd in the Complete University Guide 2015.

Kent is ranked 17th in the UK for research intensity (REF 2014). It has world-leading research in all subjects and 97% of its research is deemed by the REF to be of international quality.

Along with the universities of East Anglia and Essex, Kent is a member of the Eastern Arc Research Consortium (www.kent.ac.uk/about/partnerships/eastern-arc.html).

The University is worth £0.7 billion to the economy of the south east and supports more than 7,800 jobs in the region. Student off-campus spend contributes £293.3m and 2,532 full-time-equivalent jobs to those totals.

In 2014 it received its second Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education.

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Last edited: 05/12/2017 04:27:00