Region benefits from the University of St.Gallen

The University of St.Gallen achieved value added of 235 million francs for the region Appenzell AR-St.Gallen-Bodensee in 2017. Spin-offs from the university also play a key role for the regional economy.

Image credit: HSG

According to a press release by the University of St.Gallen (HSG), the value added for the region in 2017 corresponded to 785 Swiss francs per head of the population. Compared with 2015, when the value added was 237 million Swiss francs, the university cites the increasing tendency for employees to live outside St.Gallen, the higher share of tuition fees and the rise in the state subsidy from the canton of St.Gallen.

In addition, compared with 2015 the number of overnight stays initiated by the HSG in St.Gallen and the region in 2017 increased by 8800 to 34,600, which corresponds to 15% of all the overnight stays in the city and the region. Moreover, student numbers in the autumn semester 2017 grew by 3.9% to 8553 compared with 2015. All the graduates surveyed said that they had worked during their studies, and had therefore “made an important contribution to the regional labor market”. In 2017, approximately 10% of the around 27,000 HSG alumni were still living in the region and 14% were working.

The region also benefits from the university as an employer. According to the press release, it is one of the ten biggest employers in the canton of St.Gallen, with 3133 employees and 1051.7 full-time equivalents.

The spin-offs from the university also play a key role for the regional economy. These are facilitated by start-up support and HSG's involvement in the Startfeld initiative (innovation and start-up network in the St.GallenBodenseeArea). Together with the City of St.Gallen and the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa) the University supports “innovations and start-ups in Eastern Switzerland and in the international Lake Constance area” via Startfeld. Of the spin-offs from the university 122 carry the label “Spin-Off University St. Gallen”. “Roughly a quarter are in the canton of St.Gallen, and a few are based at other locations in Eastern Switzerland”, writes the HSG. Around a quarter of them would generate sales of at least 2 million Swiss francs per annum. The report continues that “given that around a quarter of the spin-offs are based in the region, one can assume that the spin-offs from the University of St.Gallen play a key role for the regional economy”.

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