Higher education's contribution to Irish economy tops €10 billlion a year

New study suggests 150,000 jobs in Ireland are dependent on the sector – with each role in HE supporting another seven elsewhere

December 28, 2015
Women celebrating Saint Patrick's Day, Ireland
Source: Alamy

The Republic of Ireland’s higher education institutions contribute €10.6 billion (£7.8 billion) a year to the country’s economy, a new study indicates.

The report by economists from Trinity College Dublin also found that higher education supports 150,000 jobs in the country, with each €1 spent on the sector generating €4 for the Irish economy.

The study, published in the journal Studies in Higher Education, focused on the seven universities and 14 institutes of technology in Ireland where the bulk of private spending and students are located.

Overall expenditure in the sector, not including spending by staff and students, was €2.61 billion in 2010-11, of which €1.45 billion was provided by government sources directly.

Of the €10.6 billion contributed to the economy by the sector, €7.4 billion came from universities and €3.2 billion from institutes of technology.

“Our study had a very narrow economic focus, and asked the question – does the economy receive more than one euro’s worth of economic activity for every euro it spends on higher education in Ireland?”, said Brian Lucey, professor in finance at Trinity Business School and one of the paper’s authors.

“The answer was a resounding yes. Higher education supports 150,000 jobs and generates €10 billion in national income,” he added.

The study calculated that for every job in Irish higher education institutions, seven additional jobs were indirectly supported in the economy, amounting to some 150,000 jobs in the 2010-11 academic year.

With discussions under way about the financial sustainability of Irish higher education and proposals for new funding models, the findings will “contribute to the current national debate about the funding challenges facing the sector in a post-bailout environment”, said Professor Lucey.

jack.grove@tesglobal.com

You've reached your article limit

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 6 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Register

Related universities

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Most Commented

question marks PhD study

Selecting the right doctorate is crucial for success. Robert MacIntosh and Kevin O'Gorman share top 10 tips on how to pick a PhD

Pencil lying on open diary

Requesting a log of daily activity means that trust between the institution and the scholar has broken down, says Toby Miller

India, UK, flag

Sir Keith Burnett reflects on what he learned about international students while in India with the UK prime minister

Application for graduate job
Universities producing the most employable graduates have been ranked by companies around the world in the Global University Employability Ranking 2016
Construction workers erecting barriers

Directly linking non-EU recruitment to award levels in teaching assessment has also been under consideration, sources suggest