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Sector dimensioning

Political agreement on sector dimensioning

On 19 April, the Danish government (the Social Democrats, Venstre – The Liberal Party of Denmark and the Moderates) as well as the Green Left, Danish Democrats, Liberal Alliance and the Conservative People’s Party entered into a political agreement on the sectoral dimensioning of undergraduate programmes.

The political agreement on a reform of university education of 27 June 2023 ( also included a sectoral dimensioning of undergraduate programmes.

The conciliation parties agreed to cut the number of new academic undergraduates by eight per cent in the future compared to an average of admissions between 2018 and 2022 (the ‘baseline’). Due to demographic developments – and smaller youth cohorts – this percentage has subsequently been revised upwards, so that at a national level, 10 per cent fewer students will be admitted in 2025.

According to the political agreement reached (,  SDU must cut its student intake by 9.1 percent between 2025–2029, a reduction of 367 student places compared to the average intake in the period 2018–2022.

Institution plan allows for discount

- SDU receives lots of qualified applicants for our programmes, and at a time when more skilled graduates are needed in virtually all areas, we are anything but happy about being asked to reduce our student intake. Fortunately, the politicians have, to some extent, taken into account SDU’s hard work in educating graduates outside the four largest cities in Denmark, including SDU’s plans to establish IT education programmes in Vejle. This means that the cutbacks we are facing are less severe than several other comparable universities,’ says Rector Jens Ringsmose.

He emphasises that he is currently unable to determine with certainty how the dimensioning will impact SDU.

- The agreement has just been reached, and it is still too early to say anything definitive about how it will affect SDU’s education programmes in Odense, Kolding, Esbjerg and Sønderborg. We will now set about clarifying this, and all things considered, we are pleased that we have been granted a discount.

With effect from next year

The sector dimensioning comes into force from 2025. It is also clear from last year’s political agreement, in which the cap on student intake at the universities was agreed, that the so-called dimensioning must be adjusted according to demographic developments every five years.

International student places

Last year’s university reform also included the possibility of creating more programmes in English. On 1 February 2024, the conciliation parties approved the distribution of a total of 1,100 additional English-language student places at Danish universities (

180 of these places have been allocated to SDU. The same applies to Copenhagen University, Aalborg University, Copenhagen Business School and Aarhus University, whereas DTU, ITU and RUC can set up slightly fewer places.

So far, additional English-language student places have been allocated for 2024 only. The plan calls for setting up an additional 1,400 English-language student places within the sector from 2029.

Editing was completed: 19.04.2024