Anchoring talent to regions: the role of universities in graduate retention through employment and entrepreneurship

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Drawing on the concept of human capital externalities, this paper investigates universities’ contribution to regional economies by analysing two types of graduate retention: ‘labour retention’ (graduates employed in the region where they studied), and ‘entrepreneurship retention’ (graduates starting-up businesses in the region where they studied). Using a panel of English universities (2010/11-2015/16), it examines the extent to which the specialization and diversification in terms of universities’ subject mix influences graduate retention rates across urban and non-urban areas. Findings show that agglomeration dynamics affect labour and entrepreneurship retention differently, and that universities’ knowledge offer (subject specialization) matters across diverse geographical contexts.

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
JournalRegional Studies
Publication statusPublished - 9 Apr 2021