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Roslin’s annual global impact approaches £20bn

14 September 2022

An economic report has outlined the contribution of the Institute to the local, national and international economies.

Research carried out at the Roslin Institute contributes almost £20 billion annually to the global economy, largely through productivity improvements in agriculture and aquaculture, according to an economic analysis.

This figure includes a contribution of almost £325 million to the UK economy, more than £80 million to Scotland and almost £50 million to the local economy, according to the report from BiGGAR Economics.

Their report finds that Roslin’s work supports more than 1,600 jobs worldwide, including 1,325 in the UK and more than 1000 in Scotland.

For every £1 of public funds received, Roslin generates £3.40 in Scotland and £13.50 for the UK.

The Institute is a highly impactful organisation, successfully delivering its aim to enhance the lives of animals and humans through high quality research in animal biology, the authors say.

Triple impact

BiGGAR Economic’s report considers long-term productivity gains from its research together with economic benefits associated with Roslin’s operational activities and impact from its business support.

Research impact is enabled through commercialisation of the Institute’s fundamental discoveries via strategic relationships with global genetics and animal health companies.

Roslin creates operational impact through direct turnover and employment, by local staff and student spending and through expenditure on physical capital and research infrastructure.

Its business support enables the transfer of research and knowledge through its interactions with businesses and training of postgraduate students.

Expected growth

In combination, the Roslin Institute’s projected impact by 2024/25 from sector impact, operational, and business support is expected to reach £52.9m in Edinburgh and South East Scotland, supporting 923 jobs.

This extends to £91.6m for Scotland, supporting 1,067 jobs, £382.9m for the UK, supporting 1,396 jobs, and a global impact of £24.3bn, supporting 1,711 jobs.

By 2029/30, this impact is projected to increase to £58.9m for Edinburgh and the local region, supporting 1,015 jobs, to £105.5m and 1,180 jobs in Scotland, £449.8m and 1,609 jobs for the UK, and a global impact of almost £30bn, supporting 1,923 jobs.

Growth potential

The Institute’s impact on the agriculture and aquaculture sectors will remain significant, through science-driven gains in productivity using techniques such as genomic selection. This is expected to flourish through use of applied genomics in aquaculture for disease resistance and performance traits.

If overall trends in productivity continue, advances in genomics technologies will continue to drive benefits that could be worth £130m annually by 2030. This would translate to an estimated productivity impact from agriculture and aquaculture of £37.5m for Scotland, £300m for the UK and almost £25bn globally by 2024/25, rising to £44m, £351m and almost £30bn by 2029/30.

The planned Easter Bush Agri-Tech Hub, which will bring together world-leading researchers from the Roslin Institute, the University of Edinburgh and other Higher Education institutions, public and third sector organisations, is expected to deliver incremental gains in its first 15 years.

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