Brexit and the University

The University of Nottingham will always remain a community devoted to global scholarship and diversity and will continue to celebrate and nurture our staff, students and alumni from more than 190 countries worldwide. Our global research, teaching and organisational partnerships will continue to reach out from our campuses in the UK, China and Malaysia to embrace Europe and the wider world.

Currently, the UK remains a member of the European Union (EU) with its associated rights and responsibilities until 31 October 2019 or sooner if a Withdrawal Agreement is ratified. As the potential date of the UK's exit from the EU approaches, the University recognises that this continues to be an unsettling time for staff and students in our community, as much as the nation at large.

The University therefore continues to monitor the situation closely and to make contingency plans to support our staff and students and minimise any potential impacts to our teaching and research.

Contingency Planning

The University continues to take practical measures to meet the potential outcomes of the continued political negotiations, whether these result in a deal or no deal. 

This includes seeking assurances from the supply chains that provide our research materials, goods or services; ensuring the minimum disruption to staff or student mobility; and accounting for contractual and legal issues.

Brexit Contacts are in place in every School and Professional Services area to support local planning for Brexit and to respond rapidly to specific queries or issues that colleagues might raise. 

The information and Q&A material on these pages — with dedicated sections for staff, students and researchers — will be updated as further information becomes available. If you have a question or require advice, please study these pages initially. Should you require further information, please get in touch with the relevant Brexit Contact or email the EU-Task Force mailbox.

After Brexit

The University's EU Taskforce continues to prepare for a post-Brexit environment, developing approaches to protect student recruitment, research partnerships, funding and grants and ensure the University continues to thrive. 

The University also remains active with our partners in the Russell Group and Universities UK (UUK) in lobbying government to highlight the impact of Brexit on our staff, students and research.

However or whenever Brexit takes place, the University of Nottingham will remain a globally-focused University, supporting our EU colleagues and students and committed to the global values that make us who we are. Read about our European staff celebration event.

For updates from the University's Vice-Chancellor, Professor Shearer West, visit the  VC's blog page.

Further information

Further details are available for students, applicants and staff at the links below which will be regularly updated as more information becomes available.


Progress in Brexit negotiations gives UK continued access to EU research funding for the duration of Horizon 2020

In early December 2017, The UK Government and European Union Negotiators concluded phase one Brexit negotiations and published a joint report. Based on the joint report, and the agreement of the EU to move on to the second phase of the Brexit negotiations, it is understood that the UK will continue to benefit from EU programmes during the period 2019-2020 after formal Brexit, including from Horizon 2020.

It is expected that UK-based individuals and organisations will therefore remain eligible to bid for funding, participate in and lead consortia including for calls in 2019 and 2020. If an agreement is reached, projects approved during this period will be able to continue with an uninterrupted flow of EU funding.

Directly from the report:

Following withdrawal from the Union, the UK will continue to participate in the Union programmes financed by the MFF 2014-2020 until their closure… Accordingly, the eligibility to apply to participate in Union programmes and Union funding for UK participants and projects will be unaffected by the UK’s withdrawal from the Union for the entire lifetime of such projects.”

 While the fact that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed at the end of the negotiations leaves room for some uncertainty, this is nonetheless excellent news for researchers wishing to continue to apply for funding, and, in line with the statements from Professor Dame Jessica Corner, PVC for Research and Knowledge Exchange, the University fully encourages and supports participation in Horizon 2020 projects – be they European Research Council, Marie Sklodowska-Curie or multi-partner collaborative funding. More funding is available now than at the start of Horizon 2020 and support, including direct proposal preparation support, is available. Please contact Matthew Rackley in Research and Innovation if you are applying for EU funding or if you would like advice on EU funding or the support available.


Our Erasmus+ funding guarantee until 2021/22 

The University of Nottingham is proud to have one of the largest Erasmus+ student mobility programmes in the UK.  Our students are studying and working in 18 countries this year.

The UK government assurance

The UK government has assured universities that it is working on the basis of the UK remaining a participating country in the Erasmus+ programme after 29th March 2019. In the event of a ‘No Deal’ Brexit, the UK government has confirmed it will underwrite the UK’s participation in the 2018/19 academic year for European based student mobility.

The University of Nottingham guarantee

The University believes that student mobility is essential and we will protect this experience, working with partners across the sector to lobby the government to continue funding for Erasmus+ beyond Brexit, not least through the UUK #SupportStudyAbroad campaign.

2021/2022 guarantee

Given the importance of Erasmus+ to our students’ global outlook, in the potential absence of UK government funding beyond 2018/19, the University of Nottingham will continue to underwrite outgoing student mobility programmes to the EU and Erasmus+ partners for the next three years to 2021/22.

Government intention to develop fast-track immigration process for 'elite' scientists and researchers post-Brexit

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced this week that the government will work with the scientific community to develop a new fast-track visa route that will encourage  'the brightest and best' to work in Britain. 

He  also reconfirmed that if the UK leaves the EU without a deal, the government will ensure any Horizon 2020 applications at the approvals stage will be automatically reviewed by UKRI. Successful applications will then be provided with funding.  

The fast-track visa route may be introduced later this year and may include:

  • abolishing the cap on numbers under the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visas
  • expanding the pool of UK research institutes and universities able to endorse candidates
  • creating criteria that confer automatic endorsement, subject to immigration checks
  • ensuring dependents have full access to the labour market
  • removing the need to hold an offer of employment before arriving
  • accelerated path to settlement

Useful links

Office of Global Engagement

Yang Fujia Building
Jubilee Campus
Nottingham, NG8 1BB

Telephone: +44 (0) 115 748 4812
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