Economic and Social Impact

The University of Birmingham generates £4.4 billion for the UK economy and supports nearly 20,000 jobs

The University of Birmingham is proud to be rooted in of one of the most dynamic and diverse cities in the country. England’s first civic university, we have been pursuing and sharing knowledge through outstanding teaching and research since 1900.

Our Birmingham campus has grown to 672 acres, providing a welcoming home to more than 40,000 students from across the world. Our size has changed, but our civic commitment has not. To understand how and where the University of Birmingham contributes to its city, region and country, we commissioned London Economics to look at our economic and social impact. 

Their comprehensive review, based on data from the 2021-22 academic year, highlights the significant impact we make to the West Midlands and UK economies – totalling £4.4bn and supporting nearly 20,000 jobs. Through education and skills, research and development, and our work with students, staff, local communities and partners, we make a positive and lasting impact on individuals and society.


Graphic showing that the University's total impact on the UK economy is £4.4bn

We contribute £4.4 billion every year to the UK economy - more than the West Midland's car manufacturing industry (£3.562 billion).

Graphic showing that the University supports 1 in 50 jobs in Birmingham

1 in 50 jobs in Birmingham are directly supported by the University. We support nearly 20,000 full-time equivalent jobs in the UK and more than 13,000 of those are in the West Midlands.

Graphic showing our research and knowledge exchange activities generate economic impact of £1.4bn

Our research and knowledge transfer activity contributes £1.4 billion to the economy. Every £1 million of research income generates £6.49 million of impact in the UK economy, of which £1.50 million is accrued in the West Midlands. Our research ranked in the top 5 in REF2021 in nine units of assessment and ranked top in the UK for research impact in four units of assessment.

Graphic showing the value of the University of Birmingham's teaching and learning activities stands at £1.3bn

Our teaching is worth £1.3 billion to the economy. 36% of our students are first generation from their family to attend university. We worked with more than 15,000 school pupils across the West Midlands to raise aspirations. The University trained more than 5,300 teachers, social workers, nurses, doctors and dentists.

Graphic showing that the University of Birmingham is the number one Russell Group university

We ranked 1st out of Russell Group institutions in Great Britain for UK-domiciled graduates in sustained employment and/or further study five years after graduation.

Graphic showing every seven international student studying at Birmingham generate £1m of impact to the UK economy

Through tuition fee income and local spending, our international students generate £690 million of economic impact. Every seven international students studying at the University generate £1 million to the UK economy.