Recent Release | 01 Mar 2024

Tertiary Education Qualification Demand

Macroeconomic Consulting Team

Oxford Economics Australia was engaged by the Department of Education to provide an evidence base for tertiary qualification demand over the next 3 decades to support the Australian Universities Accord into the higher education sector. This analysis was critical in enabling the Accord to develop attainment and participation targets as part of its recommendations.

Oxford Economics Australia undertook analysis of Australia’s future demand for qualifications to support the Australian Universities Accord. Our analysis provided the evidence base that informed the setting of attainment and participation targets within the tertiary sector.

Our analysis estimated that 82% of jobs across the entire workforce will require a tertiary education by 2050. To meet this level of labour market need, 90% of 25 to 34-year-olds in the workforce will require a tertiary qualification.

This suggests an additional 6.3 million jobs requiring tertiary education will be added to the labour force over the next 30 years. An estimated 960,000 additional tertiary qualifications will be required each year on average over the next 30 years to meet labour market needs for tertiary jobs.

The outlook for strong demand in higher educated roles implies that within the tertiary attainment rate of 82%, a higher education attainment rate of 51% of the working-age population and 57% of 25 to 34-year-olds by 2050 is required to meet labour market demands.

The experts behind the research

Our Macro Consulting team are world leaders in quantitative economic analysis, working with clients around the globe and across sectors to build models, forecast markets and evaluate interventions using state-of-the-art techniques. Lead consultants on this project were:

Emily Dabbs

Head of Macroeconomic Consulting

Alex Hooper

Lead Economist, Macroeconomic Consulting