Category / Business Engagement

Immerse UK – connecting the worlds of virtual reality, augmented reality and immersive technologies

Flying planes in a computer game

This is a new Knowledge Transfer Network that was launched in November 2016.  The network now has just under 400 members. Around 70% are  business, 20% are from universities and research centres, 5% from government or public sector backgrounds, and a further 5% from not-for-profit and cultural organisations.

Over 100 people from across those groups came to the  first members’ meeting on December 7th at the Digital Catapult. Following presentations from some of Immerse UK’s founding partners as well as two of the key platform providers (HTC and Holovis), there was a series of roundtable conversations about the priorities.

The key topics identified as ones where Immerse UK can make a difference are:
– access to finance, funding and investment
– content, production and user experience
– connecting industry and universities (skills and research)
– industrial applications
– mapping activity in the UK

Access to Finance and Funding
Immerse UK will work with investors and funders in the UK and other countries to make them aware of the opportunities and needs of SMEs building businesses on the applications of VR/AR and other immersive technologies across a range of markets. As well as advising public sector agencies such as Innovate UK and Horizon 2020, where we’ve already had significant success, we’ll work to connect members with angels, VCs, and commissioners.

An event is being planned  with VCs for the first quarter of 2017 in collaboration with PwC; we’ll send out more information about this early in the New Year. Immerse UK are also working with a European network, the NEM Initiative, to explore the feasibility of establishing a pan-European network of financiers focussing on VR/AR.

Mapping Immersive activities in the UK
One of the objectives of ImmerseUK is to map current expertise and activities related to VR/AR technologies. This map will support understanding of current UK expertise and facilities, to help companies gain access to the support they need, and also to link members.

Immerse UK would ideally like to create a web-based map to show the following information for each member: academia/industry; VR/AR facilities; application areas; expertise; sector; etc. and also to provide a search facility. The map must be: 1. easy to update/populate; 2. accessible; 3. visually attractive; and 4. easy to understand and use. If anyone has such expertise, or has experience of creating/using a suitable off-the-shelf software, please contact glyn.lawson@nottingham.ac.uk.

Content, Production and User Experience
Two main themes were raised in the members’ discussion around content: standards and “how can AV/VR be explored to the boundaries of its potential experience, rather than using the grammar and content of games, web or 2D content”. What are the specific affordances of AR and VR that are more than the sum of the parts from TV, Film, Games and internet?

In the conversation around production, issues raised included the reduction of costs, and the need to educate and engage content providers working in other media.

The working group in this area is also being co-ordinated by the Digital Catapult and KTN. If you are interested in being involved in the development of this please contact  Frank Boyd at the KTN 07964 563152
@frnboy

Connecting industry and academia (skills and research)
Universities were well represented at the meeting and Immerse UK continues to attract members from across academia. Glyn Lawson from Nottingham, who has submitted a bid to the EPSRC to fund networking across the academic community and between universities and business, is also leading the working group for this activity. If you would like to be involved in this aspect of the  programme, please contact him: glyn.lawson@nottingham.ac.uk.

Industrial Applications – co-ordinated by IET and High Value Manufacturing Catapult
The discussion on industrial applications of vr and related technologies was hosted by Ahmed Kotb who co-ordinates the IET’s Applied Visualisation Community. The IET will be working with the High Value Manufacturing Catapult to lead much of Immerse UK’s activity in this area.

Immerse UK are currently collaborating on an Applied Visualisation Forum which will be held at the British Motor Museum on January 26th. The forum will encourage those working in the field of visualisation and virtual reality (VR) to share their expertise, good practice, hardware and software advances and application in VR, Augmented Reality (AR) and Data Capture and Visualisation.

Immerse UK are also in the early stages of planning an event focused on the construction industry which is likely to be held in April or May 2017.

Communications
We’ve now completed the first iteration of the Immerse UK website, established groups on LinkedIn, a Facebook page, and a presence on Twitter. Please do join these groups and contribute to the conversations in them.

If you have news about activity or events that you’d like to share with the Immerse UK community, please send it to Frank Boyd or to fiona.kilkelly@ktn-uk.org.

Innovate UK funding
Innovate UK is launching two new competitions for funding in the New Year which may be relevant to Immerse UK members.
 
1. Design Foundations 
This new competition aims to support businesses in identifying high-value innovation opportunities and generate propositions for new products, services and business models. It is open to any UK company, regardless of size or sector and will provide up to £70,000 of project funding to help you address key business challenges.This programme runs for the whole of 2017. If it sounds of interest, do register for the launch event which is on 17 January 2017. You’ll get further insight into how to apply and you can also network to find the right collaborators, if you don’t already have someone in mind. There are further rounds in May and August so these may be appropriate if you need more development time.

Further details on the programme are on KTN’s website.

2. Transforming products and services
Innovate UK has up to £15 million to support the best business-led and innovative ideas for new products, processes and services. This competition is the second of 2 annual Innovate UK open competitions that support good ideas with market potential from any technology area.Projects that are likely to lead to a sustainable growth in productivity or access to new overseas markets will be given priority.

More information  can be found here.

Events:
Immerse UK members are organising a number of events over the next few weeks.

The newly opened Realities Centre is launching a programme of conferences including:
EdTech Conference, Jan 19th – London
EdTech Hackathon – Jan 21/22nd – London

You may also be interested in:
VR Connects London conference, 16th-17th January 2017
More information can be found at here.

Connecting people to accelerate innovation

network

The Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) is Innovate UK’s networking partner and provides information on funding, events and news on a number of different sectors to support Innovate UK with its mission to drive UK growth and productivity.

A number of LinkedIn groups which cover Innovate UK’s thematic areas have been set up:

You can join as many groups as you like. This allows you to keep-up-to date with funding, events and news in a variety of sectors helping you to stay on top of potential opportunities and develop future collaborations.

These are replacing the _connect networking groups.

Innovate UK – latest funding opportuntity

InnovateUK_LogoA_Interim_RGBx320govuk[1]

Innovation in infrastructure systems – round 2

Innovate UK is to invest up to £15 million in projects to stimulate innovation that creates UK business growth in infrastructure systems. We want businesses to collaborate to develop new integrated solutions and new business models.

Innovate UK are  looking to fund a portfolio of projects. These may include technical feasibility, industrial research or experimental development projects.  Projects are likley to to range in size from total eligible costs of £25,000 to £5 million. Projects should last between 3 months and 3 years.

Projects must show significant innovation in one of our priority areas:

  • ‘smart’ infrastructure
  • energy systems
  • connected transport
  • urban living

Proposals must improve business growth, productivity and/or create export opportunities for at least one UK small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) involved in the project. The proposal needs to include at least one SME either working alone or in collaboration with others (business, research base and third sector).

There are 2 competition options:

  • £5 million for projects that last from 3 months to 1 year with costs from £25,000 to £100,000
  • £10 million for projects lasting from 1 year to 3 years with costs between £100,000 and £5 million

Click here for more information.

Click here for all live calls.

If you are interested in submitting to any of the above calls you must contact your  RKEO Funding Development Officer with adequate notice before the deadline.

For more funding opportunities that are most relevant to you, you can set up your own personalised alerts on Research Professional. If you need help setting these up, just ask your School’s/Faculty’s Funding Development Officer in  RKEO or view the recent blog post here.

If thinking of applying, why not add notification of your interest on Research Professional’s record of the bid so that BU colleagues can see your intention to bid and contact you to collaborate.

The Personal Data & Trust Network is seeking new members

Data-science-history

The Network aims to build and nurture a community that brings together industry, the public sector, funders, research organisations, individual researchers and innovators to support the UK in becoming the global leader in trust and responsible innovation with personal data.

To find our more click here

It’s free to join

Innovate UK launch open funding programme

InnovateUK_LogoA_Interim_RGBx320govuk[1]

Are you working with a business that would be interested in this funding opportunity? Research organisations can participate as project collaborators. (The level of total research participation is set at a maximum of 30% of total eligible project costs.)

UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £15 million to deliver transformational innovations with potential for impact on the UK economy.

The competition is now live and open to the best business-led, innovative or disruptive ideas or concepts. These can be drawn from any technology, engineering or industrial area. This area can be one that fits into, or be outside of, any one or more of Innovate UK’s 4 priority sectors for growth. (Emerging and Enabling Technologies, Health and Life Sciences, Infrastructure Systems, Manufacturing and Materials.)

To be in scope, a proposal must:

  • demonstrate transformational or disruptive innovation leading to novel, new products, processes or services
  • articulate a clear, anticipated growth and commercialisation impact for the business(es) with considerable, demonstrable (as you would set out in a pitch to any serious investor) potential to lead to a significant return on investment (ROI)

Priority will be given to proposals that are likely to lead to sustainable gains in productivity and/or access to new overseas markets through export-led business growth.

To lead a project you must:

  • be a UK-based business
  • be a business of any size
  • carry out your project in the UK
  • work alone or in collaboration with others (businesses, research base and third sector) – this could be BU

For more information click here for:

or more information on knowledge exchange at BU contact Jayne Codling within RKEO.

 

Health Innovation Programme – February 2017

innovation_591

This 3 day course is aimed at innovators and entrepreneurs who are looking to start or expand a healthcare related business.

Dates: 9, 10 & 14 February 2017

Location: University of Southamption Science Park

Deadline for applications:  31 January 2017*  – places will be filled on a first come first serve basis

For more information: click here

To apply: click here

SHIVA project progresses with innovation funding

shiva2-1024x500

The SHIVA Project has received Higher Education Innovation Funding (HEIF) that runs for 12 months from August 2016 until July 2017. (HEIF 5+1+1.)

The HEIF funding will be critical in terms of supporting the development of networks locally, nationally and beyond. The key aims will be to link user groups and stakeholders in education, health and wellbeing related to children, young people and adults, through the creative digital innovations offered by the SHIVA project.

This project which brought innovative virtual sculpting tools to children with complex disabilities, enabling them to partake in creative digital activities from which they had previously been excluded was recognised in the Time Higher Awards last November winning the Outstanding Digital Innovation in Teaching or Research Category.

Originally the SHIVA project on 3D modelling and 3D printing for young people with disabilities was funded by the EU Interreg programme with the duration from 2010 to 2015.

The original project team worked with the Victoria Education Centre (VEC) in Poole.  As the project ended in 2015, it was clear there was scope to take this project beyond the initial funding and the SHIVA project has successfully been awarded impact acceleration funding and more recently HEIF funding.

A new Research Assistant, Michelle Wu, an NCCA graduate (2016), is the latest member to join this team. Michelle will be involved in turning the SHIVA system into a deployable product with proper installation, configuration and usage instructions. This area of work will help make SHIVA accessible to all potential users in the UK and further afield and strengthen the potential for developing networks that will benefit from this award winning technology.

For more information on this project contact Alexander Pasko or Oleg Fryazinov within the Faculty of Media and Communication.

Jayne Codling within RKEO co-ordinates the HEIF project portfolio for BU. Feel free to contact Jayne if you have any questions regarding HEIF at BU or knowledge exchange activities including business engagement and innovation funding.

RKEDF Workshop – Innovate UK: A Guide to Funding

rkeo-dev-logo-squareAs part of the Research and Knowledge Exchange Development Framework, RKEO are holding a workshop for academics to learn more about funding opportunities from Innovate UK.  This workshop will be led by our local Innovate UK KTP Adviser and the will be talking about various Innovate UK funding opportunities.  There will also be a drop-in session for one-to-one advice.

Venue: Talbot Campus

Date: Friday 9th December 2016

Time: 10.00-12.00

Book your space by contacting Organisational Development.

For further information, please contact Rachel Clarke, KE Adviser.

Business Consultancy Pop-up store was a great success!

Business Consultancy pop-up store was a 1-day event, organised to aid SMEs in realising their potential and growing their businesses.

Morning sessions enabled individual attendees to have 1:1 consultancy with four academic experts:

  • Dr Parisa Gilani (leadership)
  • Dr Sara Hourani (dispute resolutions)

    Dr Parisa Gilani consulting businesses regarding the leadership agenda of SMEs

    Dr Parisa Gilani consulting businesses regarding the leadership agenda of SMEs

  • Dr Nasiru Taura (entrepreneurship)
  • Dr Elvira Bolat (digital marketing).

Afternoon sessions included quick-fire talks for all attendees:

  1. Maximising the impact of leadership development for your business – Dr Parisa Gilani
  2. Business failure: real options for finance and running your business – Dr Nasiru Taura
  3. Online dispute resolution: more efficient ways for resolving customer disputes – Dr Sara Hourani
  4. (Re)energising your business with digital: six essential tips – Dr Elvira Bolat.

Both parts of the event were well attended by students, staff and primary local businesses, among which are Creatful, Kindred, Eat Pho Ltd. BU academic experts are now in conversation with individual SME owners to see how BU can further support these businesses in desire to grow. Most businesses are now considering to work with BU’s Student Project Bank to allow students to work on individual assignments that will greatly benefit both businesses and students.

In addition, during the event we have organised tombola. The winning number is 2 and now local Vietnamese restaurant, Eat Pho Ltd, is going to receive 1 hour 1:1 consultancy with all four academic experts.

logo
Signature dish of Eat Pho, source: https://media-cdn.tripadvisor.com/media/photo-s/08/36/07/20/highly-recommended-our.jpg

Signature dish of Eat Pho, source: https://media-cdn.tripadvisor.com/media/photo-s/08/36/07/20/highly-recommended-our.jpg

Congratulations to Eat Pho Ltd and we are looking forward to making a difference for your truly amazing business.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We would like to thank BU Events and RKEO teams as well as BSc Marketing students (Molly Oven, Danielle Hearn, Annaik Mackel, Andrew Herschtal) for supporting the event and organising it to such high standard.

CMC’s Promotional Cultures and Communication Centre wins prestigious industry research award

CMC’s Promotional Cultures and Communication Centre (PCCC) is delighted to announce that the recent research project they undertook for Exterion Media won ‘Best Research Initiative’ at last week’s Media Research Group Awards.  The MRG is the industry group for research professionals working in media related roles and is a great showcase for the work we do here.

The project was titled ‘The Mood of the Underground’ and undertaken in partnership with COG Research, a leading independent research agency.  It comprised of a number of elements: a literature review undertaken by PCCC- CMC; a proposed approach recommended by CMC; primary research completed by PCCC-CMC and COG, and delivery of the final debrief written by PCCC-CMC and COG.

Congratulations to Stuart Armon, Rebecca Jenkins, Chris Miles, Georgiana Grigore, Janice Denegri-Knott, Jill Nash and Shenel McLawrence who worked on this project.

ESRC Festival of Social Sciences

Dr John Oliver, from the Advances in Media Management research cluster, recently delivered a keynote lecture at the Open Innovation Design Jam competition at the University of Glasgow. The event formed part of the ESRC’s Festival of Social Science programme of activities that ran from 5th-12th November across the UK.

The Design Jam also involved a number of short, intensive brainstorming sessions in which teams developed innovative solutions to challenges. This event was an opportunity for innovators and businesses to explore open, collective and user-led innovation.
Dr Oliver’s talk on media innovation strategies presented empirical data on how the innovation practices of UK media firms had transformed firm capabilities and corporate financial performance.

Royal Academy of Engineering – SME Leaders Programme

Royal Academy Engineering

 

Are you working with engineering companies that would be interested in this funding opportunity?

Why not send them this information in order that they can consider making an application ?

The Royal Academy of Engineering, sponsored through the Enterprise Hub, invites applications for its small- and medium-sized enterprises leaders programme. This supports promising leaders of high growth engineering SMEs. Recipients receive a grant of between £10,000 to £15,000 towards the cost of training courses and executive education for themselves.

This scheme is open for applications  by SMEs until 4pm on 24 November 2016. For further details on the scheme click on this link.

 

 

 

Welcoming Dr Caitlin Potter to the BU Eco-Coding team

ecocoding-with-subtitle

We would like to welcome Dr Caitlin Potter who joined our Eco-Coding team from Bangor University on the 31st October. Her previous work has been on microbial communities of peatlands using metagenomic techniques and she will bring expertise and experience to the Eco-coding project.

Now that Caitlin is with us we look forward to the next stage of the project; discovering what our urban pollinators have been feeding on.

Click here for more information on this project and check out our new project page on the BU Research Website.

CaitlinPotter

Interested in helping bees and other pollinators thrive in our towns and cities?

pollinator-logo-vector-1

The newly launched Pollinator Exchange is your one-stop resource

With pollinator numbers in decline in rural areas, there has been increasing focus on the many ways in which towns and cities can be made more pollinator-friendly. Urban green spaces such as amenity grassland in parks, gardens, verges or roundabouts offer plenty of opportunities for pollinators, provided they are managed correctly.

While much academic research has gone into this field in recent years, this is not always readily available to the people in charge of managing urban green spaces. Local councils, highway agencies and other authorities need clear, evidence-based practical advice to turn our towns and cities into places abuzz with pollinators.

The Pollinator Exchange website, www.pollinatorexchange.org developed by Bournemouth University, fulfils this role. It provides an interactive database of the latest research, practical guidance and projects connected to pollinators in urban areas. All resources come with a brief summary of their main points, allowing those with limited time to follow recent developments and implement key recommendations. Website users can browse the existing catalogue and also add their own resources, thereby contributing to ongoing knowledge exchange on this important topic.

Gill Perkins, Chief Executive at the Bumblebee Conservation Trust, was one of many staff from conservation and land management organisations who generously gave their time to help test and develop the website. She said: ‘Bumblebee Conservation Trust recognises that urban environments are becoming crucially important to reverse the decline in pollinators. The Pollinator Exchange site will facilitate communication and knowledge exchange between groundsmen and contractors, biodiversity officers and everyone who influences decisions on what to grow, making it a vital resource for all to learn best techniques.’

The Pollinator Exchange was funded through the Higher Education Funding Council for England’s knowledge exchange programme: the Higher Education Innovation Funding scheme. (HEIF 5+1 August 2015 – July 2016.)

Please visit www.pollinatorexchange.org for a closer view.

For more information on this project please contact the  Project Lead Kathy Hodder.

 

 

 

Business collaboration & networking

gamechanger

Need help with networking? – why not book onto the business engagement and networking session on 2 November for some hints and tips that you can put into practice.

Date: Wednesday 16 November

Location: The Fusion Building, Bournemouth University

Event information:

Building on the successful Game Changer event held earlier in the year, Bournemouth University and NHS Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group present The Game Changer Reloaded – promoting innovation and fostering collaboration across Dorset. Join Richard Dolan, Dr Phil Richardson and Professor Jim Roach and a diverse collection of speakers to learn more about the art of the possible and the power of innovation to transform health services within the region.

Places are going fast for both sessions so make sure you book your space. Academics are encouraged to attend both sessions but if you are looking for potential funding partners / research collaborators session 2 is a must.

It’s free: book now for sessions 1 and/or 2

Timings:

Session 1 – 9.00 am -3.00 pm: Speakers from BU and external organisations share their innovation journeys throughout the day providing inspiration and ideas to those attending as to how to get involved.

Session 2 – 3.15 pm  – 4.15 pm: Facilitation and networking: This session offers the opportunity to share ideas and develop future collaborations. There’s also the chance to begin to consider research ideas that could subsequently be progressed in order to obtain external funding in the future.

Each session will need to be booked separately.

Throughout the day there’s a pop-up innovation exhibition for guests to enjoy and to share and refine ideas.

It’s free: book now for The Game Changer Reloaded 

This event forms a number being run at the university as part of the Festival of Enterprise.

Need help with networking? – why not book onto the business engagement and networking session on 2 November.

Innovation awards

Innovate 2011v4

SME innovation awards (2016) – small business were honoured on Tuesday evening at  an awards ceremony at the Houses of Parliament.

The awards recognise the many innovative successful projects that Innovate UK has co-funded. They celebrate the projects and companies that show the impact of innovation on business growth and the economy.

There were 5 categories – 4 specific and 1 overall award for inspirational innovation. Could we consider research and collaboration at BU for such an award? KTP’s also form part of this funding and contributed to Mech Tool Engineering Ltd, Gaist Solutions Limited and University of York and Phasefocus being shortlised.

Read the blog post in full including the winners and organisations shortlisted and how their areas of innovation became award winning.

Live funding competitions.

How to apply for funding.

Case studies.