Research & Innovation Projects

Research & Innovation Projects

research and innovation banner

The UK has a world-leading academic research base and universities full of invention and new ideas.

The National Centre for Universities and Business is passionate about translating inventiveness into innovation, harnessing this expertise to help businesses transform and grow.


R&D Roadmap Taskforce 

NCUB has been asked to launch a new Taskforce to advise on the future of UK R&D. The Taskforce, requested by UK Research and Innovation, will consider how partnerships between universities and businesses can be strengthened and maximised to drive growth and prosperity. Collaboration between universities and business is at the centre of the UK’s research and innovation system and will play a fundamental part in driving economic recovery and rejuvenation. The Taskforce will provide recommendations to Government as it shapes its R&D Plan. Read more.

ARPA consultation response

House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee launched an inquiry on the nature and purpose of the newly proposed UK funding agency, which is modelled on the US Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA), and how it will fit into the existing research and innovation ecosystem. To read NCUB’s response visit here:  pdf NCUB response to ARPA July 2020  (234 KB)

University-Investor Relations

Following the work NCUB undertook with Research England and Mike Rees, former deputy group CEO of Standard Chartered, to launch his review of university-investor relations, we are pursuing a broader line of enquiry: the implications of access to finance for commercialisation of university activity and IP. We are working with our membership and networks to explore issues around access to finance in a variety of scale, sector and place-oriented contexts. We will update with more details shortly. Read the 2019 NCUB Annual Lecture delivered by Mike Rees 'Translating university research into commercial value: a glass half full or half empty'

Business Motivations

The decision of a company to engage with the uncertainty and possibility of innovation is complex and not fully understood. At NCUB we are about to commence two investigations, one quantitative and one qualitative, into this subject area. We will update with more details shortly.

Knowledge Exchange

Knowledge Exchange (KE) is at the heart of university-business collaboration. NCUB aims to clearly define models of KE and best practice as well as establishing the actions and tools needed to increase the scale and quality of university, business and community Knowledge Exchange. Alongside working closely with Research England on the KEF – including in bringing a valuable industry perspective – we are also partnering with the sector to inform the Knowledge Exchange Concordat which can play a huge role in driving institutional improvement. Read more.

Leveraging university-business collaboration to raise total R&D investment in the UK to 2.4% of GDP

The Government is committed to increasing investment in R&D to position the UK as the world’s most innovative economy. About 65% of R&D investment in the UK comes from the private sector with about half of that amount coming from firms headquartered overseas. The Government will only meet its commitment if there is a major increase in business investment in the UK. Historical patterns suggest strong partnerships between universities and businesses are a significant factor in attracting that investment.

In autumn 2018, the National Centre for Universities and Business convened several meetings of business and university representatives to explore how to deliver the Government’s commitment to raise total R&D investment in the UK to 2.4% of GDP by the year 2027. Read more.


To learn more about the benefits of being part of the NCUB network, browse our Membership pages or contact our Membership Team.


Expand for more