Universities were awarded over 85% of the $83 million allocated in the latest round of Health Research Council funding and employ most of New Zealand’s researchers.
At 81%, New Zealand’s bachelor’s degree completion rates (three years out from the theoretical duration of a program) are equal with Denmark and second only to the UK. This is well above the completion rates seen in Australia (70%) and the OECD average (69%).
Last year international education overtook wood to become our 4th largest export earner behind tourism, dairy and meat. Universities alone generated at least $1,040 million per year for New Zealand, representing 1.7% of all New Zealand’s exports.
New Zealand university graduates earn between $1.3-$4 million more over their careers than a non-graduate after their costs of study are taken into account.
Universities develop and share their knowledge through teaching, publications and research collaborations. They also partner with starts up and established businesses to commercialize products, conduct research and provide consulting services.
New Zealand’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is 3 to 6% higher because of the impact that a university education has had on the productivity of the workforce (28% of the workforce had a university qualification in 2014).