Many companies choose to invest in Manchester due to the expertise and research strengths of its five universities as well as its deep pool of graduate talent. Manchester has one of the largest and most diverse student populations in Europe, allowing businesses to tap into an emerging talent pipeline.

As well as gaining access to the city’s graduate talent, companies that invest in Manchester have the opportunity to collaborate with the highly-skilled academics across the city region's universities.

These universities boast world class specialisms, research centres of excellence and concentrated clusters of expertise across Manchester’s sector strengths: advanced manufacturingcreative and mediadigital and technologyfinancial, professional and business services; and life science and healthcare.

Get in touch with the team today to find out how MIDAS can introduce your business to Manchester’s burgeoning academic community to explore opportunities for innovation, collaboration, research and development.

Sustainable Talent Pool

More than 104,000 students are enrolled across the city region’s five universities – The University of ManchesterManchester Metropolitan UniversityUniversity of SalfordUniversity of Bolton and University Academy 92 – producing around 40,000 high quality graduates every year.

Over 60% of graduates who study in the North West stay in the area to work – 51% specifically in Manchester – providing businesses with a skilled and sustainable pool of graduate talent.

There are another 25 universities within an hour’s drive of the city, where more than 402,000 people study, further broadening the scope for recruitment for companies based in Manchester.

The University of Manchester is truly international with 36% of its 40,000+ students from outside the UK. The university also ranks 27th globally according to QS World University Rankings.

Access to Experts

Boasting 25 Nobel Laureates, Manchester has a rich academic history and is home to a wealth of world-renown researchers and professors.

Across the city region, there are numerous established and emerging specialist ecosystems where businesses and academia collaborate, converge and drive innovation to pioneer new technologies – a unique opportunity for firms operating out of Manchester.

Manchester is at the forefront of advanced materials expertise, innovation and commercialisation. The University of Manchester’s School of Materials is the largest in Europe and is complemented by a range of accessible, world-leading research institutes.

Businesses operating in Manchester can benefit from the university’s £440m investment in unique research and innovation and £80m research portfolio focused on developing net zero futures.

This commitment to tacking climate change has recently been recognised in the People & Planet University League 2022-2023, in which Manchester Metropolitan University and University of Salford have been named in the UK's top ten leading sustainable universities.

Manchester is well-placed for companies developing Industry 4.0 technologies. Home to Print City, an innovation hub at Manchester Metropolitan University dedicated to teaching and commercialising 3D Printing and digital manufacturing; and the University of Salford’s National Advanced Robotics Research Centre (ASAR) which is at the forefront of research in robotics, AI, machine learning and autonomous systems.

Sitting at the forefront of new discoveries in life science and engineering is The University of Manchester, globally recognised for the calibre of its clinical and academic research capabilities and home to one of the world-leading centres for biomedical and biotechnology research. At the heart of Manchester’s innovation district is Europe’s largest clinical academic campus where health and MedTech companies can grow and co-create new medical products in collaboration with the NHS and academic community.

The University of Manchester and Alliance Manchester Business School are driving the FinTech agenda with aims to establish an internationally recognised FinTech research and teaching powerhouse, giving businesses operating in Manchester the opportunity to engage in expert FinTech-related research.

Manchester’s world class universities have also produced some of the UK’s top software developers, with many talented graduates working in the city’s thriving digital and technology sector. Designed to encourage creativity, innovation and collaboration between industry and academia, the University of Salford has created a dedicated digital learning, training and research campus at MediaCityUK.

Manchester is also home to an internationally renowned School of Computer Science at The University of Manchester. They have produced more UK located Software Developers/Programmers than any other University and is also the 3rd largest creator of European cloud computing skills in the UK. From Alan Turings first stored computer, the cities computer science legacy can see the impact it is having on the research taking place in AI and Data. At the Institute for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence, which brings together around 1000 active researchers which leads Manchester's membership of the national Alan Turing institute equating to £75M in active grants.

Adding to Manchester’s vibrant creative and media sector, Manchester Metropolitan University opened its School of Digital Arts (SODA) in 2021, to drive industry collaboration, research and innovation across the creative content spectrum.

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