N8 Facts and Figures

The North of England has a rich heritage of innovation and with the right support can help secure a lasting presence for the UK on the international life sciences stage.

Rt Hon George Freeman MP

We will ensure that UK life sciences competes on the global stage bringing economic and health benefits not only for the North of England but also the UK

Prof Nick Wright

Member, N8 Executive Management Board

Companies should believe that more of their problems can be solved by collaboration.

John Stageman

Chairman, Biomedical Catalyst

Combining the best with the best – joining up the talent and expertise of university research and industry-led R&D – is how innovation comes about

Prof Trevor McMillan

former Chair, N8 Executive Management Board

FTE jobs in the North generated by N8 universities and students – equivalent to all the jobs within a Northern city such as Salford.

For every 100 direct FTE jobs created in the N8 universities another 113 are generated in other industries in the North.

N8 universities are worth £12.2 bn to the Northern economy

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N8 universities bring in £1.26 bn in research income

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N8 universities also have:

– Contributed Gross Value Added (GVA) of £6.6 bn to the economy

– 190,000 students (8.4% of the UK total) of which

  • 139,000 are undergraduates
  • 34,000 are taught postgraduates
  • 17,000 are research postgraduates

– Over 19,800 academic staff (12% of the UK total)

– Supported new and growing businesses by:

  • filing over 1000 patents since 2010
  • supporting companies through knowledge exchange (over 31,000 contracts in 2014/15)
    • 12,000 of these are with non-commercial organisations

– Utilised EU Structural Funding to support over 30 ERDF schemes

  • ERDF schemes have supported engagement with over 4,300 businesses


N8 universities support over 119,000 FTE jobs

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N8 universities support innovation and businesses

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Key Achievements:

Launched the N8 Industry Innovation Forum to maximise links between private sector R&D, industrial and consumer needs and the research base in the UK. To date this has generated over 30 new collaborations between university and industry partners and >£9m of new research grants.

Established the £3.25m N8 High Performance Computing centre, making it easier for N8 partners to combine research strengths, build more realistic computational models and undertake more complex analyses. 90 companies have worked with N8 academics using N8 HPC for collaborative academic research, and it has been used in 377 research papers.

Launched n8equipment.org.uk, a fully searchable online database which is used by >500 individuals every month, academics and industry researchers alike, to locate and request access to research equipment across the N8 university partnership.

Secured £8m investment from HEFCE to support the £16m N8 AgriFood Resilience Programme, and >£3m investment from HEFCE into the >£7m Policing Research Programme.