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The analysis, published today (15 September 2011), shows encouraging signs of the rising value of UK knowledge exchange (Note 3). This is shown by increases in the volume of collaborative research and income from turning ideas into new products and services.
Although there are clear signs of the recent economic contraction (especially in spending by large businesses), spending by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) on research, consultancy, and other services provided by universities is growing.
Universities are putting their best efforts into stimulating economic growth and contributing to public services and society, in challenging global conditions:
Universities and Science Minister, David Willetts, said:
'It is vital for our future economic growth that business and universities work closely together. These data show that income to UK higher education institutions from business and other users has continued to increase, despite the challenging economic environment. This vote of confidence from business shows that our universities have a key role to play in our future economic growth and that is why we set up the review under Professor Sir Tim Wilson to see how much further we can go.'
Sir Alan Langlands, HEFCE Chief Executive, said:
'These figures demonstrate the continuing successful expansion of knowledge exchange, now a match for any other country including the USA. Universities are committed to exciting new start-ups, to increasingly entrepreneurial graduates and to working more with SMEs, all of which will contribute to economic recovery and growth. Set alongside their continuing engagement with major companies, universities are engaged with all sectors of the economy, an approach strongly endorsed by the Government's commitment of funding up to 2015. In a challenging economic environment, this report shows that universities are working hard to help across the economy and society.'
|Real-terms income from all sources (£000s)|
|Facilities and equipment-related services||93||86||100||100||108||113||115|
|Continuing professional development and Continuing Education||343||429||447||522||561||570||580|
|Regeneration and development programmes||251||236||252||285||249||176||213|
|Intellectual property (including sale of shares)||44||65||64||63||69||127||84|
|Outputs from UK HEIs||2003-04||2004-05||2005-06||2006-07||2007-08||2008-09||2009-10|
|Formal spin-offs established||167||148||187||226||219||191||273|
|Formal spin-offs still active after three years||688||661||746||844||923||982||969|
|% UK higher education institutions that provide:||2003-04||2004-05||2005-06||2006-07||2007-08||2008-09||2009-10|
|Enquiry point for SMEs||n/a||89%||90%||91%||91%||92%||94%|
|Short bespoke courses on client's premises||n/a||78%||80%||84%||83%||84%||87%|
|Distance learning for businesses||n/a||66%||66%||68%||68%||75%||82%|
|Required contracting system for all consultancy||n/a||66%||68%||73%||75%||72%||77%|
Sources for table: 2003-04 to 2007-08 HEFCE HE-BCI collection; 2008-09 to 2009-10 HESA Finance Statistical Return collection: HE-BCI. Real-terms values calculated using GDP deflator figures at 28 June 2011 (www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/data_gdp_index.htm) applied to monetary values using academic year 2009-10 as base.