Economic contribution of La Trobe University

Access to educational opportunities, and improving educational outcomes, has long been recognised as critical elements in economic development at the regional and national levels.

Our report provides an assessment of the economic contribution that La Trobe University graduates made to the regional Victorian economy based on the latest available data (2015) .

The analysis showed that graduates from La Trobe University's regional campuses have better labour market outcomes in that they are more likely to secure employment on a full-time basis and earn higher wages than those who chose not to undertake university studies.

Using best practice economic modelling techniques, our report estimates the impact that La Trobe University graduates have on the regional Victorian economies through both the direct and spillover effects on labour markets in that year.

As a result, La Trobe University graduates entering the workforce make a significant contribution to the regional Victorian economy. In 2015, gross regional product (GRP) in regional Victoria was projected to be around $100 million higher as a result of La Trobe University graduates entering the workforce. The results of the analysis show that in 2015, each La Trobe University graduate entering the workforce increased regional Victorian GRP by $104,705.

This economic benefit is derived through a number of mechanisms. Directly, La Trobe University graduates increase the productive capacity of the regional Victorian economies in which they are employed, increasing economic activity as measured by GRP. Indirectly, this increased economic activity leads to higher flow on demand for goods and services driven by higher private consumption and improved business performance as a result of a more productive workforce. These indirect effects are incorporated in the estimated increase in GRP.

It also follows that the increase in economic activity generated by graduates entering the workforce improves the employment prospects for other parts of the labour market. This is because, for example, higher levels of economic activity and income increase the demand for retail services and, therefore, demand for employment in this industry including those without degrees. For the 946 La Trobe University graduates entering the regional Victorian workforce, an additional 140 FTE jobs are created for those without university degrees in 2015.

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