The economic performance of UK cities is increasingly dependent on the skills of their workforce. Cities across the UK face the challenge of both attracting and retaining high-skilled talent. The Great British Brain Drain investigates migration within the UK, specifically between cities.1 In terms of all internal migration, it finds that movers tended to be much younger and more skilled than the population overall. When it comes to graduate mobility, many university cities lose their graduates to London, with this movement especially strong for the highest performing graduates with 2.1 or 1st class degrees from Russell Group universities. Despite this, most university cities experience a ‘graduate gain’; they gain more graduates than they lose. This is because the majority of movements to and from cities consist of students moving to a new city for university, and then moving again for work, with over half of all graduates following this pattern.

This briefing is a complementary piece of analysis to the main report, in which we look in detail at the nature of migration graduate mobility into and out of Derby. Firstly, it looks at overall migration patterns to and from Derby. Secondly, it looks specifically at the movements of students and new graduates. Finally it looks at the new graduate labour market in the city.
Centre for Cities uses the Primary Urban Area (PUA) definition of cities. For Derby this comprises of Derby Local Authority. For more information visit: centreforcities.org/puas.



  • 1 Swinney P and Williams M, The Great British Brain Drain: where graduates move and why, London: Centre for Cities