Census shows city’s full of bright sparks

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NEW census figures reveal Edinburgh has by far the most highly-educated population in Scotland.

The Capital has the highest proportion of people over 16 with degree-level qualifications – and the lowest proportion of people without any ­qualifications.

A detailed breakdown of data from the 2011 census just ­published shows 41.4 per cent of adults in the city have a degree or equivalent.

East Renfrewshire is the next ­closest with 35.2 per cent, while the Scottish average is just 26.1 per cent.

The figures also show just 17.1 per cent of people over 16 in the Capital have no qualifications, compared to the Scottish average of 26.8 per cent.

Other statistics from the 2011 census show unemployment in the Capital up since the last one in 2001. The percentage of people aged between 16 and 74 increased from 4.3 per cent to 5.7 per cent, but remained well below the Scotland-wide figure, which rose from 6.1 per cent in 2001 to 6.9 per cent in 2011.

The census asked people how many hours a week they worked – and according to the data, a slightly smaller proportion of Edinburgh’s workforce was working excessive hours than the national average.

Some 39 per cent worked 38-48 hours, in line with the national figure of 39.1 per cent; 7.5 per cent in the Capital worked 49-59 hours, above the Scottish figure of 6.7 per cent; but the proportion working over 60 hours was 3.7 per cent in the Capital, compared with 5 per cent nationally.

The census also gives a work profile of Edinburgh’s population, showing 40.3 per cent of 16-74 year-old are in a full-time occupation, 11.4 per cent in part-time employment and 7.9 per cent self-employed, with 3.9 per cent out of work and 5.5 per cent full-time students.

Council leader Andrew Burns said the statistics on education and the labour market were another strong indicator Edinburgh is an attractive place to study and live.

He said: “A lot of people come here to go to college or university and decide to stay. Their retention is a signal of how vibrant a place Edinburgh is and how good the ­quality of life is. But equally there are still major challenges and ­significant disparities when you look at those who don’t have work or are in short-term employment.

iswanson@edinburghnews.com