New centre to support university and business collaboration in Wales.

The National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB) formally launches its Welsh Council today. The Council will provide a strategic forum for university and business leaders to identify areas for cooperation, new opportunities and strengthen existing partnerships.

NCUB WalesOperating across the United Kingdom, the National Centre has been established with support from each of the four major higher education funding bodies including the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW, with funding provided by the Welsh Government), as well as a strategic partnership with the Technology Strategy Board (TSB). 

The launch today of NCUB Wales co-chaired by Professor Colin Riordan (Vice-Chancellor, Cardiff University) and Professor Simon Bradley (Vice-President, EADS Innovation Works) will ensure there is a dedicated platform for collaboration across Wales to further strengthen and enhance partnership across business and higher education. 

Commenting on the launch event which takes place at the National Assembly building today:

Dr David Docherty (pictured right), Chief Executive NCUB, said: “World-class collaboration between business and higher education is a cornerstone of economic prosperity. However, to meet waves of global competition, Wales needs to be a land of innovation, cooperation and networking.  The launch of NCUB Wales is a major statement of intent that Welsh universities and businesses in Wales are up for the challenge.”

Education and Skills Minister Leighton Andrews said: “The creation of the National Centre for Universities and Business Wales marks a significant step forward in building long and lasting relationships between industry and our universities and that’s to be celebrated.”

Professor Colin Riordan, co-chair of NCUB Wales and the Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff University added: “A strong and vibrant relationship between universities and business in Wales is crucial to supporting growth, jobs and prosperity. Better co-ordination between our university system and business will also support graduate employability and the transition to the work place, as well as partnerships to advance research and development.”

wales 2Professor Simon Bradley (pictured right), co-chair of NCUB Wales and Vice-President, EADS Innovation Works added: “Finding the jewels that transfer from ideas into real technology that delivers business benefit is a non-exact science, which requires Industry, Academia and Government to collaborate. Critical breakthroughs happen in our labs but crucially they also happen in Universities, SMEs and other companies – we need to be able to locate, nurture and integrate these breakthrough technologies in a manner that benefits all stakeholders.

“We need to engender trust relationships so that long term partnerships can flourish. The establishment of NCUB Wales will further advance these goals and I am delighted that we are moving together in this spirit of collaboration, partnership and trust.”

Notes for editors

NCUB WalesThe National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB) develops, promotes and supports world-class collaboration between universities and business across the UK. Our aim is to find practical ways of harnessing the talent being developed in our universities, and the UK’s strength in ground-breaking research and development, for the benefit of the nation’s economy.

Drawing on the 25 years’ experience of our predecessor body, the Council for Industry and Higher Education (CIHE), NCUB is committed to a programme of research, policy development and practical partnerships. From facilitating collaborative R&D, to developing the entrepreneurial and employability skills of students at all stages of their education, NCUB is working to support UK business and higher education in a competitive global market.

NCUB’s Leadership Council includes many of the UK’s most successful businesses and universities.

NCUB Wales in the press

Western Mail, 13th June 2013: Universities and business group fosters world-class collaboration

Daily Post, 13th June 2013: Business and uni leaders seek to boost economy