Brexit - for staff and students

General information

University of Sussex updates


March 2017
Sussex continues to support EU students and staff

February 2017
Sussex offers Brexit information sessions for EEA staff

December 2016
Shadow Brexit minister, Sir Keir Starmer, visits Sussex

November 2016
Brexit update: six months on from the referendum 21 November 2016

October 2016
University of Sussex welcomes EU students 12 October 2016

Universities UK updates and briefings


January 2018
UUK update January 2018 [PDF 112.94KB]

November 2017
Universities UK update November 2017 [PDF 105.89KB]

October 2017
Universities UK update October 2017 [PDF 286.86KB]

July 2017
UUK update July 2017 [PDF 293.20KB]

June 2017
Universities UK update June 2017 [PDF 297.23KB]

May 2017
UUK update May 2017

April 2017
UUK update April 2017 [PDF 293.25KB]

March 2017
UUK update March 2017 [PDF 220.17KB]

February 2017
UUK update February 2017 [PDF 281.88KB]

January 2017
The Government’s recent White Paper on Brexit principles included some relatively positive signals in relation to the value of international talent and international collaboration for universities. However, there are as yet no formal policy proposals or negotiating positions confirmed on the key issues for universities. UUK‘s primary objective at this time is to influence government to move from giving positive signals to firm policy positions in line with universities’ priorities. UUK’s priorities are set out in a briefing paper – approved by the UUK Board in January 2017 – titled What should be the Government’s priorities for exit negotiations and policy development to maximise the contribution of British universities to a successful and global UK?

The two most immediate priorities that UUK are urging government to take action to address are:

  • Confirmation of rights to reside and work in the UK post-exit for EU nationals that are currently working in the university sector and their dependents
  • Confirmation that EU students starting a course in 2018/19 and 2019/20 will continue to be eligible for home fee status, and be eligible for loans and grants.     

UUK have had constructive dialogue with government officials in Westminster on the situation for EU students in England and they are expecting clarity on the situation soon.

20 December 2016
UUK update 20 December 2016 [PDF 137.40KB]

November 2016
UUK update November 2016 [PDF 291.03KB]

UUK briefing note on Swiss involvement in Horizon 2020 and Erasmus+
This briefing note is for UUK members on the situation in Switzerland as regards their participation in Horizon 2020 and Erasmus+. The note explains how, following a referendum decision to limit mass immigration in February 2014, Swiss access to both programmes was restricted. It also explains what steps the Swiss Government has taken to replace access to these EU funds. Also included at the end are recommendations from colleagues in the Swiss Rectors’ Conference on what the UK can learn from their experience.  
Swiss involvement in Horizon 2020 and Erasmus+ [PDF 185.03KB]

October 2016
UUK update Oct 2016 [PDF 298.11KB]

September 2016
UUK update September 2016 [PDF 298.16KB]

23 August 2016
UUK update 23 Aug 2016 [PDF 199.66KB]

16 August 2016
UUK update 16 August 2016 [PDF 212.25KB]

15 July 2016
UUK EU Exit update 15 July 2016 [PDF 293.87KB]

July 2016
UUK update July 2016 [PDF 193.73KB] 

30 June 2016
UUK update to members 30 June 2016 [PDF 365.07KB]

Universities UK discussion papers

January 2017
There is concern that as the UK leaves the EU there will be significant damage to international research collaboration in the UK, if the UK loses access to Horizon 2020, the EU’s current research and innovation framework programme (FP) and its successor. Universities UK believes that it is in the national interest for the Government to commit to continued UK participation in Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme to the end of the current programme period (in 2020) even if this date is post-exit; and secure through exit negotiations Associate Country status for research and innovation Framework Programme 9 (the successor to Horizon 2020) that will run from 2021- 2028. This UUK paper sets out both the financial benefits to the UK of participation in EU programmes for research and the specific added value to the UK of access to Horizon 2020, illustrated with case studies.
UUK discussion paper Jan 2017 [PDF 599.06KB]

Universities UK statement

24 June 2016

Dame Julia Goodfellow, President of Universities UK, said in a UUK statement:

"Leaving the EU will create significant challenges for universities. Although this is not an outcome that we wished or campaigned for, we respect the decision of the UK electorate. We should remember that leaving the EU will not happen overnight – there will be a gradual exit process with significant opportunities to seek assurances and influence future policy.

"Throughout the transition period our focus will be on securing support that allows our universities to continue to be global in their outlook, internationally networked and an attractive destination for talented people from across Europe. These features are central to ensuring that British universities continue to be the best in the world. 

"Our first priority will be to convince the UK Government to take steps to ensure that staff and students from EU countries can continue to work and study at British universities in the long term, and to promote the UK as a welcoming destination for the brightest and best minds. They make a powerful contribution to university research and teaching and have a positive impact on the British economy and society. We will also prioritise securing opportunities for our researchers and students to access vital pan-European programmes and build new global networks."

Other documents and statements

July 2016

Italian scholars in the UK wrote an open letter to the Italian government.
Open letter to the Italian government 2 July 2016 [PDF 181.76KB]

The Equality and Human Rights Commission produced some guidance for staff worried about racism following the Brexit vote.