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What three words do you associate with Essex?


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Our regional impact

A report by independent consultants PACEC has shown the huge impact we are having on economic growth and prosperity across Essex, Suffolk and the eastern region.

The report on the work of the University of Essex is part of a study of eleven higher education institutions across six counties in the east of England, commissioned in partnership with the East of England Development Agency (EEDA) and the Association of Universities in the East of England (AUEE).

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Key findings about the University of Essex

Developing a flexible and adaptable workforce

  • Essex graduates remaining in the region after graduation contributed an estimated additional £13.7 million in gross value added (GVA) per annum.
  • We constantly engage with businesses to assess their knowledge and skills requirements and provide opportunities for existing workforces, from short bespoke courses to continuous work-based learning.

Supporting innovation

We are investing heavily in engaging with businesses. A survey of businesses showed our greatest areas of impact were:Our regional impact

  • enhancing their workforce and management skills and training;
  • supporting the technology, product and process innovation through providing access to knowledge for innovation;
  • helping businesses to access new or expanding networks supporting innovation.

In addition, we are undertaking a major investment programme to create Essex’s first innovation park – the Knowledge Gateway.

Accelerating economic development

A survey of businesses and academics showed:

  • 52 per cent of businesses believed we had a significantly positive impact in attracting inward investment;
  • 44 per cent of businesses believed we had a significantly positive impact on attracting highly skilled (non-University) workers to the local area;
  • 44 per cent of businesses believed we had a significantly positive impact on attracting corporate research and development activity to the area.

The survey also showed we play an important role in community development and regeneration.

Progressive employer

  • We are one of the largest employers in Essex, employing almost 2,000 staff, from highly skilled academic and professional services staff to support staff and technicians.
  • We have a significantly higher-than-average representation of women at professional and managerial levels, as well as being an ethnically diverse employer with an international perspective.
  • We support local prosperity beyond our direct employment. Our corporate expenditure in 2009-10 was £55.5 million, while staff and student spending was £38.5 million and £48.6 million respectively. This spending supports a further 1,030 jobs in the region.

Meeting social responsibilities

  • Resident surveys around our campuses in Colchester and Southend and University Campus Suffolk in Ipswich show the positive impact of our activities, our staff and students. Many believed we have improved their access to different types of facilities and educational opportunities.
    Surveys of our academic staff and students show significant community engagement. Half of the academic staff surveyed, and 35 per cent of students are engaged in activities to facilitate access to higher education amongst the community, working with more than 2,000 children. Almost a fifth of staff and a quarter of students engage in volunteering activities outside the University.
  • In Southend and Ipswich, we have played an important role in urban regeneration by creating an ‘education quarter’ alongside South Essex College in Southend and investing in University Campus Suffolk, alongside other funders, to help regenerate the waterfront area in Ipswich.