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Uni Contributes Millions To The City

The results of a major survey into Coventry University’s impact on the local economy have just been released by the University’s Centre for Local Economic Development (CLED). The figures illustrate vividly the importance of the City’s University to its economy.

  • in 1996/97 the University’s presence in the City added between 97 and 106 million to local economic output - the equivalent of between 1.5 % and 1.6% of local gross domestic product (GDP)
  • the University added between 55 million and 60 million to local disposable income
  • with 1,859 employees, the University ranks as the ninth largest employer in Coventry
  • in 1996/97 up to 600 additional jobs in Coventry and Warwickshire were dependent upon the University’s presence in the local economy.

CLED’s analysis excludes expenditure on the University’s major construction projects because of the variability of this expenditure from year to year. In a year when major construction work is underway, such as currently with the building of the University’s new 16 million library, the impact is even more significant.

It is through staff wages that Coventry University makes the greatest contribution to the local economy. 94% of non-teaching staff and 70% of teaching and teaching-related staff live in Coventry and Warwickshire, spending around 12 million (49%) of their disposable income locally.

The second main route through which the University’s expenditure benefits the local economy is by the purchase of goods and services by the University and the Students’ Union. In 1996/97 these purchases amounted to 24 million, of which some 28% were purchases from local businesses.

Last but by no means least, the spending power of its students is the third way in which the University contributes to the local economy, with 83.5% of their outgoings spent locally.

The survey calculated this in two ways. The first calculation excluded students normally resident in Coventry and Warwickshire, the argument being that their expenditure does not represent additional income for the area. Using this criteria, it was estimated that full-time students spent a total of 32 million during term time.

In the second calculation, local students were included as, but for the presence of the University, they may have left the local economy to study elsewhere. This produced the equivalent figure of 41 million. Using the figure of 83.5% of outgoings spent locally this produces figures of 27 million and 34 million respectively, flowing into the local economy as a direct result of student expenditure.

In addition to the direct expenditure and jobs created by the University, the report points out the University also has an excellent record of bringing otherwise derelict land and buildings back into economic use. Examples include the 20-acre Technology Park development on the former Rolls-Royce Parkside site; Singer Hall student village; the Alma Building on Alma Street; and the William Morris Building on Gosford Street.


A full copy of the report, entitled ‘The Local Economic Impact of Coventry University’ CLED, Coventry University, is available from CLED, The TechnoCentre, Coventry University Technology Park, Puma Way, Coventry CV1 2TT.

Cyrrhian Macrae or Floyd Jebson  01203 838352


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CWN / Education / Universities / Coventry University / 22 Apr 99

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM