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Sydney Education Sector

RDA Sydney - Sydney education sector - Economic Development

Education Sector   Growth   Education and Skills   Tertiary Education   University Rankings


Sydney's Education Sector

Metropolitan Sydney acts as one of Australia's major education hubs. In addition to servicing the local population, Sydney hosts an estimated 50,000 international students studying at the city's universities, with another 50,000 studying vocational and English courses (Smith, 2014).

Metropolitan Sydney is in a strong position to capitalise on an increasingly skilled labour pool. The region provides exceptional opportunities for enhanced research and development as well as collaboration between the education and business sectors.


Growth of Sydney's Education Sector

Education and training has been one of Metropolitan Sydney's key growth sectors, with employment increasing at an average annual rate of 3.0% over the past five years. In addition to generating significant direct economic activity, increasing skills and human capital will be crucial to improving productivity and employment outcomes over the coming years.

The recent depreciation of the Australian dollar will also likely see the education sector return to growth as an export industry, with Sydney ranked as the top destination in the world for international students in 2014 (AT Kearney, 2014).

Education and Skills

According to the Framework for Regional Economic Development published by the Department of Regional Australia, Local Government, Arts and Sport, developing a highly skilled and educated workforce assists with building the resilience of a region. Individuals with greater education and skills can pursue a wider range of employment opportunities, adapt to new processes and technologies which improve productivity, and improve their standard of living.


Access to Tertiary Education

The Sydney Metropolitan Region has six major universities and nine campus sites for non-metropolitan universities. The University of Sydney and University of New South Wales are ranked in the top 200 in the world by the Times Higher Education-QS World University Rankings 2011-12. Whilst there are specialist smaller campuses outside the CBD, the primary physical locations of our major universities, other than the Western Sydney University, are located in the Central and North Subregions.
The Sydney Metropolitan Region’s population is projected to increase by 1,139,958 by 2031, with nearly 60% of this growth occurring in Greater Western Sydney. While there are specialist smaller campuses of other universities located in Greater Western Sydney, there is only one major university (WSU) located in the area. In the Sydney Metropolitan Region there seems to be an unequal distribution of opportunity for the marriage of major research activity with leading business activity, particularly in Greater Western Sydney. Access to tertiary education can be defined in physical terms or in reference to an individual’s capacity to engage. Both aspects need close attention, the physical barrier of travelling extended distances for higher education, coupled with the cost of doing so can impact on the region’s ability to produce a highly-educated workforce. The lack of preparedness for an individual to embark on further education can impact greatly on the region’s productivity.
A university can be a critical economic driver for a subregion, opening up opportunities for industry diversification and the introduction of higher order jobs.
In terms of vocational training assets the Sydney Metropolitan Region has very good distribution and access to the four major TAFE Institutions with over 40 college campuses. The focus on higher level qualification attainment has caused TAFE to expand its capacity to offer advanced diploma and in some instances degree courses. The TAFE Institutes have established partnerships with some universities depending on the courses being offered and have also explored co-location options. This model may in the future be a possible.

View our Top Universities in Australia by regionhttp://www.topuniversities.com/where-to-study/oceania/australia/top-universities-australia-region-201415


Economic Profile

Information on Sydney's Economy, included the latest economic data.

Key Innovative and Research Capabilities

Sydney Key Innovative and Research Capabilities information.

Doing Business

RDA Sydney encourages investment, sustainable growth and economic development within Sydney.

Social and Demographic

Sydney has a diverse and dynamic ethnic mix with 31.7 per cent of the population of Sydney born overseas.

Investment Opportunities

Some opportunities to invest in Sydney.

Key Industries

Some of Sydney's major industries.


Last Updated: 21 May 2018