UT Austin Tells Its Story With Economic Impact Data

Published on May 11, 2015

Updated on Nov 3, 2022

Written by Emsi Burning Glass

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“What starts here changes the world.” That’s the slogan for the University of Texas at Austin—and an apt description of the school. From its collaborative projects toward social justice to the development of a centimeter-accurate GPS system, it’s clear that the university is making a positive impact on its city, its state, and the world.

In an effort to further demonstrate its contribution to prosperity, UT Austin recently joined hands with 129 other Texas colleges and universities to commission a statewide economic impact study from EMSI. Along with the aggregate analysis, EMSI estimated the individual economic impact of UT Austin at $8.8 billion in added income to the Texas economy—the equivalent of 133,000 new jobs. This impact is the result of attracting research grants; nurturing start-up companies; drawing tourists to the area for sporting events, performances, and museums; educating students; and fostering human capital.

UT Austin has incorporated the study’s results into innovative marketing materials that show the university is an incredible economic driver for the state and provides a positive return on student and public investments—an important message as Texas entered its legislative session. “We know from many anecdotes how important the state’s flagship university is to the Texas economy,” said UT Austin president Bill Powers in a blog post about the study. “These numbers corroborate those stories.”

These marketing materials are also powerful tools for encouraging student and community engagement.

See below for a few examples of what UT Austin has done with the results.

Summary Booklet

UT Austin created an attractive summary that pairs narratives about the university’s contributions to society with objective data, thus giving students, taxpayers, and the public a richer understanding of the study’s results. Shared on President Power’s blog, social media, and other media outlets, this summary makes certain that wide audiences can appreciate the university’s impact on their lives. (Click the image to see the full .pdf summary, or view a separate summary webpage here.)


UT Austin recently released an infographic that illustrates several facts and figures about the university, including its economic impact. Attractive and easily shared, this infographic provides a variety of data that can be powerful for student and faculty recruitment, fundraising efforts, and community outreach, as well as a variety of other uses. (Click the image to see the infographic in full.)

If you’d like to learn more about how EMSI’s Economic Impact Study can help your school make a difference, or if you’ve already had a study done and would like to talk about how you can put it to work, contact Aaron Olanie or read this blog post.