The University of Leicester contributes £360m annually to Leicester and Leicestershire, and supports every 1 in 23 jobs in the city, a new report reveals.
An economic and social impact report shows for the first time the scale of the contribution the 99-year-old institution makes to the region and country – the University is worth £600m to the UK a year and supports 10,000 jobs nationally.
And now its President and Vice-Chancellor has pledged to drive forward economic prosperity, as new YouGov survey data highlights how the University of Leicester is well placed to support economic recovery after lockdown.
Professor Nishan Canagarajah said: “Universities make a difference to people’s lives, not only do they bring about positive change, they also enrich the communities they are a part of.
“All that we have experienced during the pandemic has strengthened our path – alongside our partners, we will strive for a future of prosperity within our region. Our ambition is for successful emergence as a community and as Citizens of Change.”
Sir Peter Soulsby, City Mayor for Leicester said: “Never has it been more important to be united and work together for the benefit of our city. As we shape the future of Leicester in the wake of the pandemic, we recognise the positive contributions the University of Leicester has made.
“As it enters its second century, we look forward to building upon our many successes, strengthening our partnership, and helping Leicester to grow and prosper.
“We are enormously proud of the University and what it has achieved – the discovery of DNA fingerprinting, world-class space science, advances in medical and biological sciences, and the discovery of King Richard III to name but a few.”
Cllr Nicholas Rushton, Leader of Leicestershire County Council, said: “I know the Vice-Chancellor is determined that the University plays a greater role in both the well-being and the economic recovery of both city and county – I welcome that.”
The University is strongly positioned to play a leading role in the post COVID-19 economic recovery. The survey for the University shows that more than two-thirds (64%) of respondents believe the most effective way for universities and businesses to work together is through research and development collaboration.
In addition, when looking at positive benefits universities can bring to communities, three fifths think the best way to do this is through partnerships with schools, job creation, and partnering with local businesses.
Investment in economic growth, through schemes such as Space Park Leicester, demonstrates the university’s commitment to the future by putting the city at the centre of space related research, innovation and skills development, building upon its rich heritage in this area.
As one of the country’s most innovative health research centres, more than £23m has been invested in health-related research. The University’s partnerships with Leicestershire NHS Trusts allows new technologies, treatments and techniques quickly embedded into the health service so that patients are able to benefit.
Additionally, the University of Leicester has revealed that its students spend £10 million with local businesses annually. Almost 20,000 of its students contribute to the city’s economy in shops, bars and restaurants. Once they graduate, 23% choose to make Leicester their home.