Social Mobility

Social Mobility

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Universities and businesses must work together to ensure that students and graduates from all backgrounds are able to reach their potential and succeed in life.

Social mobility is rising up the political and education agendas, with several recent reports highlighting that the UK has yet far to go. From politics to the arts, as much as half of the country’s leaders consist of private school alumni – a striking proportion, considering they only make up 7% of the population. In fact, a 2017 report by the Social Mobility Commission highlighted that only 6% of doctors, 12% of CEOs and 12% of journalists are from working-class backgrounds.

The Government has set forward the UK’s vision to boost social mobility, which is to also play a critical role in addressing the UK’s skills gap. According to Education Secretary Damian Hinds, it is fundamental for a “strong, highly skilled, productive economy, which successfully deploys and maximises its human resources”.

From introducing inclusive work placements and apprenticeships to designing apps to help disadvantaged pupils, to contextualised admissions and recruitment, there are numerous ways universities and business can collaborate to improve social mobility in the UK.

Listed below, we’ve gathered the latest research and opinion around the topic of social mobility. If you would like to contribute please email

What is the National Centre for Universities and Business doing in this area?

Many NCUB members have expertise in social mobility, yet initiatives have less impact when they occur in isolation. To combat this, our series of focused, cross-sector 2018 roundtables brought together the expertise of our business and university members to consider where collaboration could more effectively provide a supportive environment for students and graduates from all backgrounds.

Key points and additional evidence emerging from these meetings will be used to influence policy in social mobility.

Read  Sarah Cowan and Peter Seddon’s blog synthesising the discussions at the 2018 roundtable series.

Related content

Social Mobility – Resources

Social Mobility – Opinion

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