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University of Leicester reaction to Brexit result

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As the result of the UK's referendum on whether to remain or leave the European Union has finally been announced, academics and staff at the University of Leicester have been giving their reaction to what is undoubtedly an historic decision for the United Kingdom and the EU. With the UK's exit from the EU now decided on by the electorate, experts have expressed their views on the impact both now and in years to come:

Responding to the result of the EU referendum, Professor Paul Boyle, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Leicester, said: "This is a shocking result for the nation and its universities and a dark day for UK science. Universities were aligned in their view that remaining in the European Union would be to the benefit of their students and staff.
"Now that the electorate has decided that we should leave, there needs to be some very careful negotiation about how we continue to collaborate freely with our European partners for the benefit of science, society and our economy.  We need to offer support to our European colleagues and students who are working and studying in the UK, and we need to begin campaigning immediately to protect the science budget.
"One of the priorities for higher education as well as the country in the short term will be to seek stability and reassurance. There will be questions that must be addressed over our ability to continue to access the very significant levels of European funding for research and how the government will make up for any losses, and what impact Brexit is likely to have on the mobility of students and staff between Britain and EU countries. Every effort must be made both by the government and our universities to counter any impression that this result means that the UK has become less welcoming as a study or work destination for international students and staff.
"Given the political uncertainties arising from the vote, another question will be how it will affect the passage through parliament of the Higher Education and Research Bill. Since provisions in the Bill represent a fundamental shift in the HE and research landscape, the sector will need to know as soon as possible the implications for this legislation."
Professor Panicos Demetriades, Professor of Financial Economics, said: "As I have been saying over the past few weeks and months, a vote in favour of Brexit will unleash unprecedented political and economic uncertainty, not only in the UK but also throughout Europe, which will weigh heavily on the British economy and the value of sterling.  All this is already happening and it will be several months before negotiations for a new deal with the EU can even start, as a new government will now need to be formed. We are already witnessing unprecedented volatility in financial markets, as indeed many economists predicted."

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