The Brighton Factor

New graduates and their local labour market

Pollard E, Cowling M, Barber L, Millmore B, Hunt W | Report 450 | Institute for Employment Studies | Apr 2008

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How can the city of Brighton and Hove make the most effective use of those university graduates who want to stay, and how can graduates develop their careers locally?

There are concerns that graduates wishing to stay local are competing within a wide pool and may suffer underemployment due to the nature of the local labour market.

The city is vibrant and has seen strong economic growth, but has a dual economy with highly skilled jobs supported by lower skilled front-line support service jobs, and high levels of out-migration of residents (commuting outwards for work).

This report explores the aspirations and expectations of University of Sussex graduates, particularly those who stay in the city of Brighton and Hove and in the wider county after they graduate.

Almost 650 final-year students shared with us their plans for the future, what they wanted to do, where they would like to be, and how they thought they would get there. The report draws conclusions for the graduates, the university and the city.