It’s not about what you teach, it’s about where you teach. You might be surprised at how large the income gap is for university jobs around the world. Here are four countries to explore based on data from various reports and job-hunting websites.
1. South Africa
It is widely believed that developed countries offer the highest salaries to employees across the sectors. But a recent survey shows that some developing countries offer even more attractive remuneration packages. For instance, according to the data from Association of Commonwealth Universities in 2017, South African institutions offer the highest overall average salaries compared with any other country. This ranking accounts for the cost of living, which is an important indicator when measuring actual quality of life. Likewise, countries such as Malaysia and India are also recommended in this report.
Although the ‘Down Under’ is far away from home for many, it is a brave new world for those who want to make a change. According to Economist Intelligence Unit, Australia has three cities ranked among the top 10 most liveable cities in the world, such as Melbourne and Sydney. It is one of the highest paid countries for academics. Plus, it has nice beaches in the densely populated coastal area, a large international community with an active lifestyle, and a culture of personal freedom and mutual respect. It’s neighbouring country New Zealand also offers excellent benefits for academics, despite having just eight universities nationwide.
3. The United Kingdom
The UK is not doing badly when it comes to paying academics. On average, a lecturer can be paid £40,000 per year, while a professor will be paid £75,000 per year. Considering the national average income of less than £30,000, this salary is relatively generous. Furthermore, there are 130 universities in the United Kingdom, giving you plenty of career opportunities in the long run.
Switzerland is relatively expensive for visiting academics from other countries. This is due to the strength of the currency and the high cost of services. Income tax varies in each canton (district) and range from as little as a flat 1.5% tax in Obwalden to a 76% joint income tax (for couples) in Geneva. Although it has the highest Big Mac Index in the world, it also offers the highest salaries in Europe to attract talent from around the globe. An assistant professor in Switzerland can make about 130k CHF (£100,000) per year, whereas it’s common for a professor to earn 160k CHF (£122,500) per year. If you are lucky enough to receive an offer from ETH Zurich, you can expect a salary that will definitely motivate you to deliver some cutting-edge research.
There are many variables that can influence your quality of life afforded by your income, so you’ll need to do some research. We hope this post gives you some inspiration for your next career move!
Explore the latest academic vacancies in South Africa
Explore the academic vacancies in Australia
Explore the academic vacancies in the United Kingdom
Explore the academic vacancies in Switzerland