The UCD economy: university makes a €1.3bn economic impact every year

27 May 2015

UCD has created over 8,900 jobs in the local economy

Total economic output generated by UCD and its students in Ireland amounts to €1.3bn annually and supports 8,914 jobs, according to a new report.

The new report, launched by Ireland’s Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD and entitled Delivering Impact: The Economic, Cultural and Social Impact of University College Dublin, confirms UCD as Ireland’s largest university.

The report was compiled by Viewforth consulting.

“This report highlights that University College Dublin, as Ireland’s largest university, is playing a key role as an economic force in Dublin and in Ireland overall,” the Taoiseach said.

“UCD is not only creating economic activity, stimulating and supporting over 8,900 jobs but generating output across a wide range of economic sectors. UCD also has a key role to play in Ireland’s ongoing economic recovery.

“The best international companies are attracted to Ireland because of the range of talent and skills available to them here. UCD is at the forefront in Ireland in educating the next generation of leaders in all disciplines.”

Ireland’s most globally-engaged university


Pictured: Andrew Byrne, a final year UCD BComm student and auditor of the University College Dublin Volunteers Overseas (UCDVO) Student Society; An Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD and Professor Madeleine Lowery, a biomedical engineer in the UCD School of Electrical, Electronic and Communications Engineering

The report also highlighted the broader international impact of the university.

“Impact reports, such as Delivering Impact, are increasingly important and are being widely applied across the international higher education landscape,” said Professor Andrew Deeks, president of UCD.

“As such, this is the first report produced by the university to identify and quantify the diverse ways in which UCD, Ireland’s most globally-engaged university, is making an economic, cultural and social impact, both nationally and internationally.”

University College Dublin Volunteers Overseas (UCDVO), launched in 2003, has eight partnerships with NGOs, community groups and educational institutes in countries including Haiti, India, Nicaragua, Tanzania and Uganda. Annually, around 125 UCD volunteers are placed on projects, which to date have included the provision of 19 houses, five schools and two health centres.

Since 2003, UCDVO has placed 12,900 children in education programmes and donated 570 computers to more than 20 schools. Some 800 people have been employed annually by local partners and 335,200 meals have been provided, all of which has an estimated social economic value of just less than €800,000.

UCD staff members frequently engage in additional public service activities, both inside and outside working hours. In the academic year 2013/2014, more than 1,500 UCD staff contributed more than 22,000 days to public service activities. This equates to a conservative estimate of €10 million worth of services to local, national and international communities in addition to core teaching, research and administrative work at UCD.

Professor Orla Feely, UCD vice president of research, innovation and impact, said: “This report demonstrates that, as well as the significant financial contribution UCD makes to the Irish economy, the work we undertake also has a substantially broader social and cultural impact.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years