Category / Business Engagement

Innovate UK funding available – Plastics innovation: towards zero waste

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Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, is investing up to £4 million in innovation projects to reduce the harm that plastics do to our environment and increase productivity and growth of the UK economy.

The aim is to support innovative activities that result in less persistent plastic waste in our environment through the development of new polymers, processes, designs, recycling regimes, value added recyclate or bio-alternatives.

A business or research and technology organisation (RTO) must lead the project.

Please see summary below:

Available funding: between £50,000 and £1 million

Project dates : between 1 December 2018 and 31 December 2020

Project duration : minimum 3 months; maximum 24 months

Please see this link for more information.

Testing connected and autonomous vehicles: funding available

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The Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) – with Meridian Mobility and Innovate UK – has up to £30 million for projects that help make the UK the most effective connected and autonomous vehicle development ecosystem in the world.

Businesses and research organisations can apply into 2 competitions that support the testing of connected and autonomous vehicles and progress their development.

Connected vehicles data exchange

In the first competition, there is up to £5 million for one project that supports the sharing and trading of data generated by infrastructure, connected or autonomous vehicles or other third parties.

Autonomous highway, rural roads and parking

There is up to £25 million in the second competition. This is for up to 6 projects for facilities to support the testing of connected and autonomous vehicles for highways, rural roads and parking.

Key summary:

Deadline: 29 August 2018

Lead : UK-based business or research organisation

Available funding : Connected vehicles data exchange – up to £10m; Autonomous highway, rural roads and parking – between £1m and £20m

Project dates : before March 2019

Please see this link for full details of the call.

Funding opportunity – Smart tracking of waste across the UK

The Department for Environmental, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) is investing up to £400,000 in projects that use digital technology to record and track the movement of waste through the economy. Funding for the competition is under SBRI (the Small Business Research Initiative), which aims to bring together government and businesses to find innovative solutions to public sector challenges.

This competition is in 2 phases. Phase 1 is for contracts of up to £80,000 to examine the feasibility of ideas. The best ideas could win a share of up to £1 million to develop and field test a prototype in a second phase.

Summary:

Deadline: 18 July 2018

Available funding: Phase 1 – up to £80,000; Phase 2 – up to £1m

Please see this link for full details of this call.

Funding opportunity – ISCF Next Generation Services Research Programme

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The ESRC has announced the Next Generation Services Research call under the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund. Proposals of up to £1.25 million (100% full economic cost) are invited for interdisciplinary research grants, focused on working with businesses to identify the potential opportunities offered by the application of new technologies in the high value services sector.

This is a ‘Pioneer’ initiative that will focus in the first instance on the accountancy, legal services and insurance industries.

Please see below key summaries of this call:

Deadline : 4pm; 18 July 2018

Project start & end dates : between December 2018 and March 2021

Please see this link for full details of this call.

Apply for Innovate UK Robotics and AI for safer work residential and funding

Collaborative Decision Making

Innovate UK is offering opportunities for individuals to apply on behalf of their business to attend a 5-day residential innovation lab in September 2018. This innovation lab will allow delegates to work in teams to generate innovative and commercially-viable ideas in the following areas:

  • robotic structural capabilities
  • reformable structures
  • long-range and beyond visual line-of-sight operations
  • electronics, sensors and photonics for extreme environments
  • AI, autonomy and situational awareness
  • mission planning and risk management
  • systems engineering, including methodologies, verification and validation tools
  • security, reliability, safety and trust
  • collaborative robotics and AI systems
  • long endurance operations
  • modules that support increased dexterity
  • locomotion platforms that work extreme environments

In the second stage of the competition, teams that attended the innovation lab will have the opportunity to apply for a share of up to £15 million grant funding for their project.

Please see below a summary of the competition:

Deadline for application: 11 July 2018

Number of places available : 20 to 30

Eligibility: a business, academic, charity, public sector or research and technology organisation based in the UK and intend to carry out the project and exploit the results in the UK

Residential dates : 10 September 2014 – 14 September 2018

Second stage proposal award : £2m – £6m

Second stage proposal start date : January 2019

Please see this link for full details of this funding opportunity.

Creative launch for Responsible Project Management research

Dr Karen Thompson and Dr Nigel Williams, of the Department of Leadership, Strategy and Organisations, are drawing on the creative industries to kick-start research on Responsible Project Management.

They have designed a 2-day interactive workshop that will bring together leading researchers and practitioners from across the UK and Europe.  This inter-disciplinary event will begin to consider how Project Managers can develop sustainability competencies to meet the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  A social learning approach, incorporating ‘Open Space Technology’, will be used to develop new understandings, practices and relationships.  Building on existing literature on Responsible Management, an important objective of this workshop is to identify a future research agenda for Responsible Project Management.

To get participants into a creative mindset, the workshop will be preceded by a relaxed and informative event with multi-award winning singer/songwriter Steve Knightley.  His journey is one of growing a business from grass roots to international fame.  A business that delivers excellence and fosters a warm embracing sense of community, and a journey that has taken him from local pubs to the Albert Hall, and beyond.

Academics and practitioners with a keen interest in sustainability from any discipline are invited to join one or both events.  Booking is essential.

Monday 2 July Growing a Sustainable Business  https://growingasustainablebusiness.eventbrite.co.uk

Tuesday 3 & Wednesday 4 July: Responsible Project Management Interactive Workshop https://responsibleprojectmanagement.eventbrite.co.uk

 

Background and rationale for research on Responsible Project Management

Responsible project management is the concept of incorporating the UN’s 17 Sustainable Goals in Project Management.

Projects and project management are now widely recognized by organizations as being essential to achieving their strategic objectives (Turner 2014).  Project management is a transferable skill, and projects are the engines of change across industries and in many aspects of business.  Research on project management therefore sits at the heart of business, management and education.  Since projects are conceptualized and realized by temporary, heterogeneous groups of individuals, existing management interventions from Operations and Supply Chain Management such as ISO14000 may be of limited value. There is therefore a need for Project Management researchers to develop academic insights that can encourage the application of responsible principles as well as the development of Project Managers with the competencies to deliver projects informed by knowledge of sustainability issues.

Sustainability is formally recognized as a global priority and impacts all aspects of project management (Silvius 2016).  The domain of management has begun to incorporate sustainable principles using the UN Goals which inflenced the Global Compact framework on Human Rights, Labour, Anti-Corruption and the Environment. At BU, Sustainability is a strategic investment area.

There is an emerging strand of research at the intersection of project management and sustainability.  However, the focus of existing research is developing metrics to evaluate project outcomes.  Incorporating sustainability into projects requires project managers to go beyond delivering defined results for specific customers to managing the impact of their activities on society and the environment.

Building on existing literature on Responsible Management, an important objective of this workshop is to identify a future research agenda for Responsible Project Management, with a focus on developing new researchers and practitioners. The workshop will feature organised, cross-disciplinary interaction among researchers and practitioners.

 

Engaging with a Business Audience – Book now

On Wednesday, 4th July 2018, BU’s Research and Knowledge Exchange Office invite BU staff to attend the event –  Engaging with a Business Audience.

This interactive one-day workshop aims to equip you with the necessary skills to be proficient and confident when communicating with a business audience. The key learning outcomes are:

  • Communicating to a business audience
  • Being confident when you are at a networking event

This event will be delivered off-campus but within the Bournemouth area. The event is a full day so those booking will be expected to attend for the full duration, with catering provided for attendees.

Reserve your place and find out how you can bring your research to the attention of industrial stakeholders and potential partners!

Innovate UK funding – commercialising quantum devices

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Innovate UK will invest £20 million in innovation projects to develop prototype quantum technology devices that address one or more of these important industrial challenges which are explained further in the scope of this competition:

  1. Situational awareness.
  2. Infrastructure productivity.
  3. Seeing the invisible.
  4. Trusted peer to peer communication

Your proposal must:

  • demonstrate how the device can be brought to market, with manufacture or assembly in the UK
  • fulfil an end user need through the technological advances in quantum technology

A business must lead the project. You must work in collaboration with others.

Please see below a summary of this funding opportunity:

Funding type : Grant

Project size : Between £3 million and £10 million

Project dates : 1 November 2018 and up to 29 months (must be completed by March 2021)

Deadline : 13 June 2018, 12noon

Please see this link for more information on how to apply.

Innovate UK Funding available – robotics and AI (ISCF)

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Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £15 million from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) in business led collaborations to develop robotic and artificial intelligence systems that remove humans from infrastructure inspection, maintenance and repair in extreme environments.

The Innovate UK Knowledge Transfer Network is inviting businesses to one of three briefing events in Glasgow, Manchester and London to learn more about this £15m competition which includes a 5-day residential workshop to develop collaborative proposals for R&D projects.

To sign up for the briefing events, please click on the links below:

Glasgow, 23rd May

Manchester, 24th May

London, 4th June

For more information about this funding opportunity, please visit this link.

UKRI Future Leaders Fellowships Scheme

The UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) scheme to support early career researchers and innovators with outstanding potential in universities, UK registered businesses, and other research and user environments including research councils’ institutes and laboratories has been launched.

 

The UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship scheme is a single scheme across the entire UKRI remit that will:

 

–  develop, retain, attract and sustain research and innovation talent in the UK

–  foster new research and innovation career paths including those at the academic/business and interdisciplinary boundaries, and facilitate movement of people between sectors

–  provide sustained funding and resources for the best early career researchers and innovators (up to seven years support available on a 4+3 model)

–  provide long-term, flexible funding to tackle difficult and novel challenges, and support adventurous, ambitious programmes

 

This is scheme is additional to existing Research Council fellowship schemes and is distinct as the Future Leaders Fellowships;

 

–  are available across the entire UKRI remit,

–  are open to individuals based in business as well as those based in universities,

–  provide long term support of up to seven years (on a 4+3 model with review at 4 years),

–  come with additional expectations of host organisations in their support to the fellow, for academic host organisations this includes tapered salary commitment from year 3 of the fellowship and commitment to an open-ended position for the fellow during or at the end of their fellowship.

 

There will be six calls for these fellowships; two calls per year between 2018-19 and 2020-21 (financial years), typically awarding at least 100 fellowships per call across UKRI’s remit (with the initial round being smaller, aiming to award ~50 fellowships).

 

The key dates for the first call are:

 

–  Thursday 7 June – host organisations must submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) for each of the applicants they intend to submit in the first round

–  16:00 on Tuesday 3 July 2018 – first round full application deadline

 

The second call deadline will be on 31 October 2018 (EOI deadline 4 October 2018). Dates for subsequent calls will be published on the UKRI website.

 

For further information visit the Future Leaders Fellowships call page.  If you wish to discuss this opportunity in more detail and/or find companies to work with then please contact Ehren Milner.

If you are interested in applying then please contact your RKEO Funding Development Officer in the first instance.

 

Global Traction in the USA!

New York is the world’s media capital and it is no surprise that American academic institutions dominate the field of Media Management. Fordham University in New York extended an invitation to me as a Visiting Scholar, and as a Santander Universities Network partner, the process of engaging with them was straight forward.

My application to the Santander Mobility Scheme had 3 primary objectives which fused research, education and professional practice. During my visit to the USA, I taught on Fordham’s MSc Media Management programme, had discussions with leading media management scholars and the Editor of The International Journal on Media Management.
I also met with the Managing Director of the Boston Consulting Group to discuss the metrics that are used to measure the level of innovation in firms, as well as their the chronic under performance. I also had a meeting with the Editor of Strategy & Leadership to discuss developing a ‘Masterclass’ paper on Scenario Planning and how best to encourage Early Career Researchers to write for the journal.

All of this activity aims to develop a number of fusion based outputs and impacts into the near and medium term future. Overall, it was a great trip and many thanks to the Santander Staff Mobility Scheme!

HE policy update for the w/e 29th March 2018

Industrial Strategy

The Creative Industries Sector Deal has been announced.  You can read the document here.

The press release says:

  • As part of a Creative Industries Sector Deal, to be announced today by the Digital and Culture Secretary Matt Hancock, Business Secretary Greg Clark and Co-Chair of the CIC, Nicola Mendelsohn, more than £150 million is being jointly invested by government and industry to help cultural and creative businesses across Britain thrive.
  • A Cultural Development Fund will also be launched for cities and towns to bid for a share of £20 million to invest in creative and cultural initiatives. The power of culture and creative industries to boost economic growth is evident across the country…[NB Bournemouth is identified as high growth]
  • The Sector Deal aims to double Britain’s share of the global creative immersive content market by 2025, which is expected to be worth over £30 billion by 2025. To seize on the opportunity of this expanding market, government is investing over £33 million in immersive technologies such as virtual reality video games, interactive art shows and augmented reality experiences in tourism.
  • Britain is already leading the way in developing immersive technologies. PWC has predicted that the UK’s virtual reality industry will grow at a faster rate than any other entertainment and media industry between 2016 to 2021, reaching £801 million in value, and that by 2021 there will be 16 million virtual reality headsets in use in the UK.
  • Improving the nations skills is at the heart of the government’s modern Industrial Strategy and to ensure the industry has the skilled workers it needs to deliver this, up to £2 million will be made available to kickstart an industry-led skills package, including a creative careers programme which will reach at least 2,000 schools and 600,000 pupils in 2 years. A new London Screen Academy, with places for up to 1000 students, will also open in 2019.

New Quality Code published

After a consultation proposing changes to the UK Quality Code for HE, (you can read BU’s response here) the QAA have published the new, very short Code. There’s some commentary on Wonkhe here.   It really is short – in a 7 page document there is only one real page of content – but there is more guidance to come.

HE Review

To inform our BU response to the HE Review all staff and students are invited to consider the issues in this (anonymous) 5-minute survey. Please take a look at the survey questions as we’d like to hear from as many staff and students as possible. You don’t have to answer all the questions! The major review of HE will shape the HE system, including how universities are funded for years to come. The survey will be available to staff and students until Friday 20th April.

The Department for Education also published a research report by Youthsight on the influence of finance on higher education decision making

Amongst its findings:

  • University was the only option considered by the majority of applicants (75 per cent), especially those applying to the higher-tariff universities (78 per cent). This was consistent across socio-economic backgrounds. Getting a job and travelling were the main alternatives considered by applicants
  • Financial factors were not the biggest influence on the final decision to apply to university. The most important factors were the desires to be more employable, to achieve the qualification and to pursue an interest in a subject. This was the case for applicants from both the higher and the lower socio-economic groups.
    • Lower socio-economic group applicants placed a higher importance on grants, bursaries and living costs than applicants from higher socio-economic groups, although finance still remained a secondary influence on their decision to apply to university.
    • The course offered (82 per cent of applicants), university reputation (58 per cent), and potential for high future earnings (41 per cent) were the most commonly cited major influences on applicants’ choices about where to study.
    • Differences in bursaries offered, tuition fees charged and the ability to continue living at home were secondary factors when choosing where to study. These factors accounted for three of the bottom four of eleven factors tested that might influence which university to choose. However, they were more important for lower socio-economic group applicants.
  • The maintenance loan, repayment threshold and particularly maintenance grants and university assistance were more important to members of the lower socio-economic group than the higher socio-economic group in alleviating cost concerns.

And the government have published the outcomes of their 2014/15 student income and expenditure survey.  There is a lot of data and there are lots of interesting charts, including figure 2.6 (the influence of financial support on my decisions), table 3.7 (what support English domiciled students received by mode of study), figure 4.3 (breakdown of total student expenditure (this one excludes the tuition fee but there is also a chart that includes it),  figure 4.4 (total expenditure and housing costs).

The data from both these reports will be pored over to support responses to the HE review.

Freedom of speech

The Joint Committee on Human Rights has published its report into free speech in universities. The Committee has also published its own guidance for universities and students:

Charity Commission Response: Charity Commission responds to Joint Committee on Human Rights

The Committee don’t identify many actual cases of free speech having been prevented but note a “chilling effect” (it’s hard to prove a negative, of course). The report identifies factors that potentially limit free speech in universities:

  • regulatory complexity
  • intolerant attitudes, often incorrectly using the banner of “no-platforming” and “safe-space” policies
  • incidents of unacceptable intimidating behaviour by protestors intent on preventing free speech and debate
  • student Unions being overly cautious for fear of breaking the rules
  • unnecessary bureaucracy imposed on those organising events
  • fear and confusion over what the Prevent Duty entails
  • unduly complicated and cautious guidance from the Charity Commission.

Recommendations

  • That an independent review of the Prevent policy is necessary to assess what impact it is having on students and free speech, after evidence the Committee took demonstrated an adverse effect on events with student faith groups
  • That the Charity Commission, which regulates student unions as registered charities, review its approach and guidance, and that its actions are proportionate and are adequately explained to student unions and don’t unnecessarily limit free speech
  • That the Office for Students should ensure university policies proactively secure lawful free speech and are not overly burdensome
  • That student societies should not stop other student societies from holding their meetings.  They have the right to protest but must not seek to stop events entirely
  • That while there must be opportunities for genuinely sensitive discussions, and that the whole of the university cannot be a “safe space.” Universities must be places where open debate can take place so that students can develop their own opinions on unpopular, controversial or provocative ideas
  • Groups or individuals holding unpopular opinions which are within the law should not be shut down nor be subject to undue additional scrutiny by student unions or universities.

Chair of the Committee, Harriet Harman MP, said:

  • “Freedom of speech within the law should mean just that – and it is vital in universities. Evidence to the Joint Committee on Human Rights showed that there is a problem of inhibition of free speech in universities. While media reporting has focussed on students inhibiting free speech – and in our report we urge universities to take action to prevent that – free speech is also inhibited by university bureaucracy and restrictive guidance from the Charity Commission. We want students themselves to know their rights to free speech and that’s why we’ve issued a guide for students today.”

Some particular points to note:

  • 41 The imposition of unreasonable conditions is an interference on free speech rights. We do not, for example, consider it a reasonable condition that, if a speaker gives an assurance that their speech will be lawful, they be required to submit a copy or outline of their speech in advance.
  • 42 In our view, freedom of expression is unduly interfered with:
    • when protests become so disruptive that they prevent the speakers from speaking or intimidate those attending;
    • if student groups are unable to invite speakers purely because other groups protest and oppose their appearance; and
    • if students are deterred from inviting speakers by complicated processes and bureaucratic procedures.
      It is clear that, although not widespread, all these problems do occur and they should not be tolerated.
  • 60 Whilst there must be opportunities for genuinely sensitive and confidential discussions in university settings, and whilst the original intention behind safe space policies may have been to ensure that minority or vulnerable groups can feel secure, in practice the concept of safe spaces has proved problematic, often marginalising the views of minority groups. They need to co-exist with and respect free speech. They cannot cover the whole of the university or university life without impinging on rights to free speech under Article 10. When that happens, people are moving from the need to have a “safe space” to seeking to prevent the free speech of those whose views they disagree with. Minority groups or individuals holding unpopular opinions which are within the law should not be shut down nor be subject to undue additional scrutiny by student unions or universities.
  • 91 Universities must strike a balance to ensure they respect both their legal duty to protect free speech and their other legal duties to ensure that speech is lawful, to comply with equalities legislation and to safeguard students. It is clearly easier to achieve this if debate is carried out in a respectful and open way. But the right to free speech goes beyond this, and universities need to give it proper emphasis. Indeed, unless it is clearly understood that those exercising their rights to free speech within the law will not be shut down, there will be no incentive for their opponents to engage them in the debate and therefore to bring the challenge that is needed to develop mutual understanding and maybe even to change attitudes.
  • 93 It is reasonable for there to be some basic processes in place so that student unions and universities know about external speakers. Codes of practice on freedom of speech should facilitate freedom of speech, as was their original purpose, and not unduly restrict it. Universities should not surround requests for external speaker meetings with undue bureaucracy. Nor should unreasonable conditions be imposed by universities or student unions on external speakers, such as a requirement to submit their speeches in advance, if they give an assurance these will be lawful.

Migration Advisory Committee report on EEA and non EEA workers

The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) has published its interim update on the impact of EEA and non-EEA workers in UK labour market. This is the first MAC inquiry of two – the second one is the one about students, this was more general and about workers across all sectors.

The update sets out a summary of the views expressed by employers and of the regional issues raised. They add that “these themes seem the best way of summarising the views expressed to us but should not be taken to imply that the MAC endorses a sectoral and/or regional approach to post-Brexit migration policy.” The MAC has also published the responses to their call for evidence, broken down by sector.

The report includes the following findings:

  • The vast majority of employers do not deliberately seek to fill vacancies with migrant workers. They seek the best available candidate.
  • Employers often reported skill shortages as one reason for employing EEA migrants.
  • Many EEA workers are in jobs requiring a high level of skill that take years to acquire. But, some of the claims about necessary skill levels seemed exaggerated.
  • Within occupations, EEA migrants are better educated than their UK-born counterparts.
  • The MAC view is that, from the economic perspective this does amount to saying that it is sometimes possible to hire a given quality of worker for lower wages if they are an EEA migrant than if they are UK-born.
  • To the extent that EEA migrants are paid lower wages than the UK-born this may result in lower prices, benefitting UK consumers. Our final report will also consider these possible impacts.
  • Many responses argued that a more restrictive migration policy would lead to large numbers of unfilled vacancies. The MAC view is that this is unlikely in anything other than the short-term.
  • The MAC view is that it is important to be clear about what the consequences of restricting migration would be.

Research bodies update

This week is the launch of UKRI – it is worth looking at their objectives.

.The Council for Innovate UK has been announced. The members are:

  • Sir Harpal Kumar, who will serve as Senior Independent Member through his role as UK Research and Innovation’s Innovation Champion and work closely with the board
  • Dr Arnab Basu MBE, Chief Executive, Kromek Group plc
  • Baroness Brown of Cambridge DBE FREng FRS (Julia King)
  • Professor Juliet Davenport OBE, Chief Executive, Good Energy
  • Dr John Fingleton, Chief Executive, Fingleton Associates
  • Priya Guha, Ecosystem General Manager, RocketSpace UK
  • Dr Elaine Jones, Vice President, Pfizer Ventures
  • Professor John Latham, Vice-Chancellor of Coventry University
  • Sir William Sargent, Chief Executive, Framestore
  • Stephen Welton, Chief Executive, Business Growth Fund

The REF panels have also been announced – follow this link to see the lists.

Parliamentary Questions

Q Andrew Percy MP

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether his Department is taking steps to ensure that prospective undergraduates understand the potential effect of their choice of course on their prospects post-graduation.

  • A Sam Gyimah MP The department is working to make destinations and outcomes data more accessible to prospective students, to help them compare opportunities and make informed choices about where and what to study.
  • On the 12 March 2018, I announced an Open Data Competition. It will use government data on higher education providers so that tech companies and coders can create websites to help prospective students decide where to apply. This competition will build on the government’s Longitudinal Educational Outcomes (LEO) dataset, which gives information on employment and salaries after graduation.
  • Alongside this, my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State has requested that the Office for Students include LEO data on the Unistats website as soon as possible.

Q Angela Rayner MP To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate his Department has made of the value of plan 1 student loans that will not be repaid.

  • A: Sam Gyimah MP: It is estimated that the value of the plan 1 student loan book that will not be repaid was £13.1 billion as at 31 March 2017, when future repayments are valued in present terms. The face value of the plan 1 student loan book was £42.8 billion at this time. This information is in the public domain and published on page 155 of the Department for Education’s 2016-17 Annual Report and Accounts which can be found at:
  • https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dfe-consolidated-annual-report-and-accounts-2016-to-2017.

Q Angela Rayner MP: To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the written ministerial statement of 31 October 2017 on government asset sale, HCWS205, what methodology his Department used to decide which loans from the plan 1 loan book would be sold.

  • A Sam Gyimah MP: The loans sold in December 2017 were a selection of loans from the plan 1 loan book issued by English Local Authorities that entered repayment between 2002 and 2006.
  • These loans had the longest history of repayments, the longest servicing history and the most accurate data on borrowers’ historic earnings. This information allowed the government to most accurately value these loans for sale.
  • The government’s objective when issuing loans to students is to allow them to pursue their education regardless of their personal financial situation. Once this objective has been met, however, retaining the loans on the government’s balance sheet serves no policy purpose. These loans could be sold precisely because they have achieved their original policy objective of supporting students to access higher education.
  • Pursuant to Section 4 of the Sale of Student Loans Act 2008, a report on the sale arrangements was deposited in the House libraries on 7 December 2017 (deposit reference DEP2017-0778): https://www.parliament.uk/depositedpapers.

Q: Angela Rayner MP: To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the written statement of 6 December 2017 on Government Asset Sake, HCWS317, what assessment he has made of the net fiscal effect of the sale of the student loan book after accounting for reduced income arising from lost repayments.

  • A: Sam Gyimah MP: The government only sells assets when it can secure value for money for taxpayers from doing so. In assessing the value for money of the sale, the government took into account repayments foregone on the loans sold. In executing the sale, we achieved a price that exceeded the retention value of the loans sold, calculated in line with standard HM Treasury green book methodology.
  • Selling financial assets, like student loans, where there is no policy reason to retain them, where value for money can be secured and where borrowers are not impacted is sound asset management. The sale ensures government resources are being put to best use and is an important part of our plan to repair public finances.
  • Pursuant to Section 4 of the Sale of Student Loans Act 2008, a report on the sale arrangements was deposited in the House libraries on 7 December 2017 (deposit reference DEP2017-0778): https://www.parliament.uk/depositedpapers.

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Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund: £300m to support our ageing population

Innovate UK have announced that £300m will be available to businesses and researchers to address the challenges facing our ageing population. Some £98m of this funding will be reserved for research and innovation that supports the care and health of people as they age. A further £198m will become available to support the use of early diagnosis innovation and the development of precision medicine.

This funding will be available from UK Research and Innovation with the challenges running in 2018 and 2019.  As the opportunities become available, please contact Ehren Milner (emilner@bournemouth.ac.uk) if you have any queries.

 

Innovate UK Open Sector Competition: DEADLINE 9/5/18

Applications are now welcomed from businesses to Innovate UK’s Open competition for research and development for projects costing between £25k and £1m.  Projects may last a maximum of three years and must be led by a UK business.  An allocation of £19m has been made available for this fund but a further £10m is available for projects that are more suitable for a Knowledge Transfer Partnership.  Research organisations can be eligible for up to 30% of eligible project costs so this is a great opportunity to work in collaboration with a business.  If you are already working with a business on a novel/game-changing idea, and want to know more information, please contact Ehren Milner, Research Facilitator for Industrial Collaboration (emilner@bournemouth.ac.uk).

Multi-million pound funding opportunities from Innovate UK

 

 

Innovate UK has millions of pounds to invest in innovative UK businesses up to April 2018. Please see an overview below:

Emerging and enabling technologies and health and life sciences

Up to £19 million will be invested to support productivity and cutting-edge innovation across these 2 industry sectors.

Find out more about this competition.

Open programme

A share of up to £19 million will be available for game-changing or disruptive innovations that have the potential to impact the UK economy.

Projects may come from an Innovate UK industry sector – emerging and enabling technologieshealth and life sciencesinfrastructure systems and manufacturing and materials – or be outside of them.

Biomedical catalyst

This first biomedical catalyst competition of 2018 will offer up to £12million to SMEs working on projects solving healthcare challenges and these include:

  • disease prevention and proactive management of health and chronic conditions
  • earlier and better detection and diagnosis of disease, leading to better patient outcomes
  • tailored treatments that either change the underlying disease or offer potential cures

Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund: Faraday Battery Challenge

The Faraday Battery Challenge supports the design, development and manufacture of batteries for the electrification of vehicles as part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

Find out more about this competition.

Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund: robotics

Up to £20 million will be available in this competition. It is being funded as part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund for robotics and artificial intelligence in extreme environments.

Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund: medicines manufacturing

Innovate UK is investing up to £10 million in innovation projects in medicines manufacturing through the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

Collaborative research and development projects with focus on the technical and commercial challenges of manufacturing new medicines are sought.

New opportunities will be published on the Innovation Funding Service as and when they are available. Search for funding.

Sign up for Innovate UK’s newsletter or email alerts to get the latest news and funding competitions.