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Higher Education Staff Data – open data release

Open data release reveals rise in the proportion of academic staff who are non-UK nationals.

View academic staff by cost centre, sex and nationality   View all HE Staff data

The open data release Higher Education Staff Data includes data on the nationality of academic staff at UK universities. 31.4% of academic staff were of non-UK nationality in 2018/19, a rise of 0.6 percentage points from 2017/18.

The data is broken down by cost centre – an accounting tool used as a proxy for academic department. Economics and econometrics had the highest proportion of non-UK nationality academic staff with 65%, followed by Chemical engineering with 58%. Nursing and Education were the academic cost centres with the lowest proportions of non-UK nationality staff with 10% and 12% respectively.

Higher Education Staff Data includes detailed open data tables of staff demographic and contract characteristics updated with 2018/19 data.


  • Cost centre is a financial concept which groups staff members to specific related cost centres which enables analysis between the Student, Staff and Finance streams. All HE providers arrange their academic schools, faculties and departments differently. HESA cost centres are designed to be as comparable as possible between different providers.
  • Figures in this release relate to staff employed on the census date of 1 December 2018.
  • Statistics in this press release exclude ‘atypical’ staff. Atypical contracts are generally non-permanent contracts for short, one-off, or as-and-when tasks. Atypical staff figures are counted differently and shown separately and should not be added to non-atypical figures unless using full-time equivalent (FTE) data. See the Terms of employment definition for more detail.
  • See Definitions: Staff for full definitions of terms used in the release and explanation of the coverage of statistics.
  • The Upcoming data releases schedule of Official Statistics releases from HESA has been updated. The planned publication month for Experimental UK Performance Indicators for graduate outcomes has been changed from April to May 2020. This is to enable more time to determine the appropriate methodology for the creation of a graduate outcomes indicator from the new Graduate Outcomes survey.
  • HESA cannot accept responsibility for any inferences or conclusions derived from the data by third parties.
  • To give feedback on today’s release please complete the Open data feedback form.
Press Release

Press Officer