Having been founded as the first civic university in the UK, a university 'for Birmingham and the district', we are now also a global university, leading locally, nationally, and internationally.

These twin roles as an exemplary civic and a leading global university are mutually reinforcing: together, they strengthen our research excellence, student opportunities, and reputation. Our civic credibility in Birmingham, Dubai, Guangzhou, and other locations provides the foundation for our global reach. This global influence in turn brings significant benefits to the regions in which we operate, and allows us to bring new insights, solutions, and opportunities for our students, our academic community, our city and region, and the world.

With our ambition to be a leading global university, we will tackle global challenges, so that our research extends beyond regional and national boundaries to have international impact. Our students form an international community, and we will provide them with an outstanding international experience, both at their home campuses and through high levels of mobility. Importantly, we will build the confidence across the University to project our areas of truly world-leading strength.

As an anchor institution in the city of Birmingham, our Civic University Agreement captures how we will work with our local partners to continue to bring deep cultural, social, and economic benefits to our city and region. Elsewhere, we will play a leading role in delivering Dubai’s vision, and will continue to bring demonstrable economic benefit through our partnerships in our sister city of Guangzhou, China. In India, we will collaborate across education, healthcare, environmental sciences, global surgery, sports science, and more, to improve lives in India and across the world.

The challenges faced by the locations in which we operate are those of the world, allowing us to speak with authority into the world’s challenges. We aim to build further the strong bridges between our civic and global engagement, making advances in shared challenges of regional, national and global importance in areas such as Interfaith Studies, Maternal Health, Social Inequality, and Air Pollution. We will provide our students with global citizenship skills, while enabling them to engage actively with their local communities.

Read our Birmingham 2030 goals

See our key priorities

Discover our case studies

Our Birmingham 2030 goals are to:

Welcome the best international students, staff, and partners to Birmingham and our global locations

Take the best of Birmingham to the world, expanding our local, national, and global partnerships

Make a major contribution to our city and each of the regions in which we operate

Underpinning these goals are our key priorities

Our key priorities will be:

Reinforcing our position as an exemplar of a civically-engaged university

We will bring cultural, social and economic benefits in each of our contexts. This includes working closely with major partners such as Birmingham City Council, the West Midlands Combined Authority and Birmingham Health Partners to deliver the commitments of our Civic University Agreement; playing a central role in the ambitions of Dubai and the UAE; and extending our impact in China, Europe, North America, and India.

Nurturing current and new local, national, and global partnerships and networks

We will expand the University’s global reach, drawing on our major research strengths to work closely with industry, academic, public and third sectors partners, in order to grow our research and education opportunities. We will work with our city and region to provide solutions to local, national and global challenges in areas such as rail, advanced manufacturing, energy, and sustainable business.

Projecting our world-class strengths, locally and internationally

We will raise our national and international reputation by equipping our staff with the knowledge and confidence to promote the University, by enabling our students to be our best advocates, and by engaging our alumni as ambassadors. All of our campuses and locations will benefit from our international reach and our convening power will bring together people and organisations to host debates of global importance, leading conferences and events, such as the Global Challenges Forum.

Equipping our students to engage locally and think globally

We will attract growing numbers of the very best students from around the world and will provide all our students with the option of studying or working abroad, to deepen their intercultural understanding and skills. They will be models of how to be both local and global citizens. Our students will contribute to their communities through volunteering, internships, entrepreneurship, and other regional initiatives.

Building on our significant contributions to the wider education system

We will continue to support the distinctive mission of the University of Birmingham School, develop the National College for Advanced Transportation and Infrastructure, and train a wide range of health professionals to lead and innovate within the NHS. We will explore further opportunities to grow high-quality educational opportunities at all levels for excellent students in the regions that we operate.

Our case studies

Our case studies

Artist's impression of the new Dubai campus frontage

UoB Dubai

(interpreting civic approach in that context)

National College for Advanced Transportation and Infrastructure

(including links to rail globally)