Media reports on plans to cut university funding for arts subjects

Categories: School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology

After the widely reported plans to cut funding for arts subjects at universities by almost 50 per cent in the media over the past week, it was reassuring to receive clarification from the Office for Students on 6 May that this was widely overstated, with the proposed overall reduction being approximately 1 per cent.

Dr Sam Grogan, Pro-Vice Chancellor Student Experience, said:

“Arts subjects and the industries flowing from and fed by them are not a ‘nice to have’ or expendable, but essential to the ongoing development of culture across the UK. The arts are central to the wellbeing of the UK as a whole and, consequently, its capacity for productivity and creative innovation.

"Any significant removal of funding would play against the government’s commitment to levelling up. It would increasingly steer access to university programmes in music and the arts towards the socially affluent and international students – creating an increasing divide which sees vocations in the arts as the preserve of the elite and well off.

"The economic impact of the arts and creative sectors is huge – the music industry was worth £5.8bn to the UK economy in 2019. Reduction in funding and redirection of this funding towards other disciplines is a false economy – other disciplines need to be focused upon and funded well, but not at the expense of the arts.”

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