The evidence

All parties agree, the #1 priority for talent development in 2018 is training for soft skills.

LinkedIn Workplace Learning Report 2018


of executives say that soft skills are equally important or more important than technical skills
The 10 most common graduate skills gaps:
  1. Managing up
  2. Dealing with conflict
  3. Negotiating/Influence
  4. Commercial awareness
  5. Resilience
  6. Business-appropriate communication
  7. Self-awareness
  8. Time management
  9. Problem solving
  10. Interpersonal skills

The Institute of Student Employers (ISE) Annual Development Survey March 2018


of researchers agree that they have a moral responsibility to engage with the public
Most researchers have done at least one form of public engagement in the past 12 months, though activity is often infrequent. Only 28% of researchers have received formal training in public engagement. Only 11% of STEM and 18% AHSS researchers feel very well equipped to to do public engagement.

Consortium of UK public funders of research 2016

The most highly rated skill in terms of importance for work was communication skills, which were rated as either very important (56%) or fairly important (34%) by the majority of respondents.

CIPD October 2018

Workers of the future will spend more time on activities that machines are less capable of, such as managing people, applying expertise, and communicating with others. The skills and capabilities required will also shift, requiring more social and emotional skills and more advanced cognitive capabilities, such as logical reasoning and creativity.

McKinsey & Company 2017

At the interview stage, the businesses surveyed are overwhelmingly likely to decide between two equally qualifies candidates based on:
70% performance in interview
50% quality of the job application
24% skills gained in extra-curricular activities

British Chamber of Commerce Workforce Survey 2017

Engaging with the public is of increasing strategic importance for higher education, to strengthen relevance, responsiveness and accountability and to build trust.

National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement

Researchers don’t exists in a bubble outside society, and ultimately society owns that research in some way. I think to cocoon ourselves and exist outside that is no longer viable and I think research would suffer if we did that.

Professor Jeremy Farrrer Director Wellcome Trust

“It has never been more important to communicate and engage with the public on every aspect of research and innovation.”

Professor Sir Mark Walport, UKRI Chief Executive

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