By Shivaun Meehan, Head of Communications, NCUB

Our members do not disappoint in originating ideas for commercialisation and helping realise business potential.

The National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB) website is a treasure trove of examples of university-business collaboration. And these examples bring to life the value to the UK as outlined in our collaboration progress monitor: £95.6m industry income for knowledge exchange, £1.35bn university R&D funded from foreign sources and £125.8m licensing income. Such partnerships between universities and business are not only crucial to the economy but also in delivering the knowledge rich economy the UK needs.

So we’re delighted that this week sees the ‘Oscars’ of Higher Education in a glitzy affair and the perfect opportunity to champion the extraordinary breadth of UK higher education. To specifically celebrate university-business collaboration the NCUB, with the Times Higher Education, created an award for the ‘Most Innovative Contribution to Business-University Collaboration’ in 2016.

The first winning partnership, between Dairy Crest and Harper Adams University, resulted in 40 new R&D staff taking residence on the Harper Adams campus, discovering new domestic and international markets, leading to a £2 million budget increase for Dairy Crest research.

The innovative partnership between Ryder Architecture and Northumbria University won with the BIM Academy in 2017, bringing vital competitive advantage to the UK construction industry. The partnership provides knowledge and expertise on the application of digital 3D design, construction planning and asset management, and is a centre of excellence for BIM research, consultancy, training and education.

In 2018 the value of this award celebrating university business collaboration was recognised by HSBC, and we’re delighted their sponsorship enabled the award to continue.

This year’s shortlist for the ‘Most Innovative Contribution to Business-University Collaboration’ includes an eclectic range of partnerships: fighting medical device associated infections, placements and scholarships helping to mould a global retail strategy, saving a traditional printing process, a virtual-reality game on the life of one of Britain’s greatest scientists, a recycling innovation, and the history of coffee embedded in a coffee company’s staff training programme.

Each are worthy entries – so watch this space for the winner’s announcement after the awards ceremony.


Published: 26 November 2018