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The Progressive Policy Think Tank

Measuring the benefits of integration: The value of tackling skills underutilisation

This briefing reviews the evidence on the integration of migrants into the UK labour market.

It illustrates the potential benefits of utilising migrants’ untapped skills to the UK economy. While compared to other European countries the UK has a relatively good record on getting migrants into work, it could make far better use of migrants’ skills, experiences and qualifications.

According to our estimates, addressing over-qualification could add around £7 billion to the UK’s annual economic output. There is therefore a strong economic case for a new programme of investment in labour market integration – including in English language proficiency, which our research suggests is associated with poor labour market outcomes such as over-qualification. 

Download the methodology spreadsheet here.