Category / innovation

Funding – 3D printing solutions

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Are you working with a business that may be interested in this funding opportunity?

Businesses can apply for a share of £4.5 million for innovation projects that develop smarter, better connected 3D printing solutions.

Innovate UK is investing up to £4.5 million in industrial research projects that will stimulate innovation in additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing.

Additive manufacturing is a well-established tool for rapid prototyping and tooling. It can provide direct production of end-use components and consumer goods. These can be in a wide variety of global market sectors – from medical devices to aerospace.

Businesses can apply for funding to help them explore and develop their wider digital manufacturing capability. Projects must show a significant innovation step in both additive manufacturing and connected digital manufacturing.

Competition information

  • the competition opens on 23 May 2016
  • applicants must register before noon on 20 July 2016
  • a UK-based business must lead the project and work with at least one other business
  • businesses could receive up to 70% of their project costs for industrial research
  • we expect projects to last between 1 and 3 years
  • we expect total eligible project costs for each project to be between £500,000 and £1.5 million
  • there will be a briefing event for potential applicants in London on 7 June 2016

Click here for more information.

Competion brief can be found here.

Innovate UK launches £15m manufacturing call

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Innovate UK has opened a £15-million competition to support the development of novel technologies or production processes across the manufacturing industry.

Projects need to focus on identified technical or commercial challenges. Innovate UK will fund projects that aim to lead to increased UK SME productivity, competitiveness and growth.

Projects need to be led by a business and must involve at least one SME. They can be carried out by an SME working alone or in collaboration with other organisations. Projects with costs of £100,000 or more must involve working with other partners

Innovate UK are looking for projects which focus on any of the technical feasibility, industrial research or experimental development research categories.

Projects should last between 6 months and 3 years. They should range from total costs of £50,000 to £2 million.

Competition brief in full.

Competition guidance.

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.

Opportunity to receive updates on knowledge exchange and innovation (AURIL Membership)

AURIL

 

Association for University and Research Links  (AURIL) is the professional association representing all practitioners involved in knowledge creation, development and exchange in the UK and Ireland who work to ensure that new ideas, technologies and innovations flow from their institution into the market place. AURIL has more than 1600 members from universities and public sector research establishments across Europe.

The Association enjoys widespread international recognition through its success in influencing UK government policy. It has strong working relations with the Confederation of British Industry, Universities UK, the UKIPO, the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), HM Treasury and Higher Education Funding Councils.

Bournemouth University is a member of this association with a number of academic and professional services support staff members of AURIL.

A number of events are co-ordinated by AURIL during the year including the annual conference – a good way of keeping up-to-date with  what is happening within the sector aswell as a chance to network and meet industry contacts. For more information on this association click here.

You can also opt in to receive regular updates on topics such as EU funding, Local Economic Partnerships (LEP), Student Enterprise & Employability, CPD, Knowledge Exchange. To check out the full list of topics and to be added or to  update your current listing please contact Jayne Codling in RKEO.

The next series of updates will be sent by the end of the month so get your request in soon!

Business networking session – virtual and augmented reality

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A networking session will take place on 23 May as part of “Impact Week, with the aim of to taking  a closer look at how research can have an impact and make a difference beyond academia, and the ways in which this can be achieved. Developing relationships with external organisations in order to form partnerships and collaborations are just one such way in which to recognise potential “need” for  research.

This is a themed networking session: H2H – bringing research to life (Human2Human). A business networking event on the topic of virtual and augmented reality

Time: 14.30-16.00

Location: PG10 – Talbot campus

Event description:

Virtual and augmented reality offers users new ways of perceiving and interacting with the digital world.  Not limited to the entertainment sectors, this approach can be adopted for both technical and industrial contexts.

This drop in session provides an opportunity to find out more about the topic and approaches currently being undertaken both within and outside the university.  Attendees will have the opportunity to network with academics from BU and local industry partners that may already be involved in projects or are keen to develop collaborations within this area.

Find out more and book now via Eventbrite

 

 

 

 

Innovation awards – Partnership for Conflict, Crime and Security Research (PaCCS) – new call to be announced

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Innovation awards under PaCCS focusing on Conflict and International Development

The ESRC and AHRC will shortly be launching a further call for interdisciplinary innovation awards under the Partnership for Conflict, Crime and Security Research (PaCCS) focusing on Conflict and International Development. (Pre-call.)

Find out more information including the proposed call timescale here.

AHRC information.

If you are interested in submitting to this call 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.

Robotics & Autonomous Systems – US leads robotics investment boom

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Rapidly increasing activity in the robotics sphere has led the Financial Times to herald an investment boom time for one of the hottest new markets in tech. And, as robots break free of factory production lines, the US and China are poised to take the lead from Japan and Germany.
After growing at a compound rate of 17 per cent a year, the robot market will be worth $135bn by 2019, according to IDC, a tech research firm. The Asian markets, Japan and China, which is in the early stages of retooling its manufacturing sector, account for 69 per cent of all robot spending. But it’s US investment, which has more than doubled to $587m in 2015, according to CB Insights, that is the major factor in global growth.
Although the amount of cash flowing into the sector is still at a relatively early stage, all the lead indicators of the innovation economy are positive, says the FT: patent filings covering robotics technology have soared, with China alone accounted for 35 per cent in 2015, and venture capital investments more than doubled last year.
“From private equity investors looking to build portfolios of robot investments, to new “incubators” such as Playground, started by former Google robotics chief Andy Rubin, the investment options have been proliferating rapidly.”
“The most interesting things are in Silicon Valley or the US,” Dmitry Grishin, a Russian internet entrepreneur and investor told the FT.
Surging investment in artificial intelligence is giving the US an early advantage in the race to dominate a new era of robotics, say investors and experts. Recent advances, particularly in deep learning, have shifted robotics from its core industrial market into areas such as self-driving cars.
However, as low-cost robots move into more consumer and business uses, such as drones, China’s hardware manufacturing expertise will also make it a more significant player, they believe.
AI, big data and the cloud
The threat from new AI and cloud technologies has also incentivised established players such as Japan’s Fanuc, the world’s largest maker of industrial robots, to up their game. The company plans to start connecting 400,000 installed machines by the end of this year, to collect data about their operations and improve performance and is banking on their proliferation as a means of competing with the likes of Google, in the data sphere at least. Similalry, Germany’s Kuka is building a deep-learning AI network for industrial robots.
While US companies such as Google and Facebook have led  investment in deep learning, Silicon Valley has also seen a wider start-up boom in AI and robotics. A collapse in the price of components, thanks to smartphone growth, has made it cheaper to launch robot companies. But the new entrepreneurs rushing into the field are different from the hardware engineers who historically dominated the field, experts say, and are just as likely not to even use the word “robotics,” with a focus, instead on autonomy and AI.
Complementing this activity, astonishing advances in academia are giving fuel to future visions of what may become possible, with scientists creating living ‘insect-computer hybrid’ robots with user-adjustable speed and gait and exciting innovation in powering the technology, such as ‘ATTO cells’ that will be instrumental in creating intelligent swarms of robots. This nascent technology is expected to enable automation at ten times the speed of the upcoming 5G technology, supporting the deployment of highly-demanding wireless services in domains such as reconfigurable robot factories, intelligent hospitals and flexible offices. Ultimately, individual robots will be able to tap into the computing power of other robots in the swarm and/or local computing power in their immediate environment.
Simplistic machines
But that’s the future and there are plenty of technological and ethical hurdles for robotics to address first. Current goals are infintely more modest: to build single-purpose robots that do one thing very well. If successful, these machines will quickly become part of the fabric of everyday life, much like today’s automated vacuum cleaners or cash machines, say experts.
Another key design feature of many of the early robots is that they will need to operate alongside people, initially at least, making humans more productive rather than replacing them altogether. The limitations of current automation technologies mean that robot companies are thus currently focused on keeping “the human in the loop,” with most experts believing that people will have an important role to play in directing and providing a vital source of learning for the machines for decades to come.
Rapid learning is, in fact, vital for robotics manufacturers’ initial products, according to Grishin. The trick, he says, will be to find a task that relatively simplistic machines are able to handle, then use knowledge gained in the field to rapidly add to their capabilities and usefulness. “First put them in consumers’ hands, then learn from their behaviour.” Thus the machine becomes a minimal vessel for more and more sophisticated software.
It’s a proposition that investors are finding increasingly difficult to resist.

Funding launched to encourage entrepreneurs in engineering or technology

Royal Academy Engineering

The Royal Academy of Engineering invites applications for its launchpad competition. Funding aims to encourage young entrepreneurs to start a new business based on their innovation in engineering or technology, with engineering defined in its broadest sense. The competition aims to:

•improve the skills of the awardee:

•develop role models of entrepreneurship;

•bring engineering innovations to market for a wider public benefit.

Applications are open to individuals or small teams. The lead applicant must be UK-based and aged between 16 and 25. They should have a viable and commercial business proposition with a large market opportunity, and be planning to set up a business within the 18 months following the application deadline. The feasibility of the initial product or service must have been proven preferably with a basic prototype.

The winner receives the JG Gammon award, which includes a cash prize of £15,000 and a year’s membership of the enterprise hub. This provides mentoring, training and networking opportunities with UK entrepreneurs and investors. Up to two other individuals or teams may be chosen as runners up.

Click here for more information on support for entrepreneurs.

Click here for more information on the launchpad competition – now live !

Pollinator Exchange HEIF project connects practitioners and academics in common pursuit of urban pollinator conservation

Pollinators are vitally important ecosystem service providers. They have been credited with being responsible for pollinating one-third of the food we eat; indeed many of our crops are wholly or partially dependent on insect pollination. Hence, the decline in pollinator populations has been a cause of concern not just for scientists, but for governments and the public at large. In the UK, this has led to an official government strategy on how to best protect our pollinators: the National Pollinator Strategy (Defra 2014).

Taking into account the growing number of studies that show the vitally important role urban areas can play in pollinator conservation, the strategy recognises pollinator-friendly management across towns and cities as a key component in nationwide efforts to halt their decline. While understanding of urban pollinators’ needs and experience in managing urban green spaces for their benefit is accumulating, it can often be difficult for practitioners to find the practical advice they need to implement the right measures. This was highlighted at a recent meeting co-organised by Defra and the University of Bristol’s Urban Pollinators Project which recommended the establishment of a central repository of information for urban practitioners.

BU’s Pollinator Exchange HEIF project, launched in October 2015 collaboratively between the Faculty of Science and Technology and the Media School, aims to fulfil this role. It will result in an online portal that links practitioners, academics, NGOs, private gardeners, ecological consultants and anyone else with an active interest in urban pollinator conservation. Users are invited to share relevant guidelines, case studies, summaries of peer-reviewed papers and other content that will help urban green space managers make pollinator-friendly choices based on the latest evidence.

The project is supported by Bournemouth Borough Council and the Bumblebee Conservation Trust. A stakeholder workshop in May will provide potential users with the opportunity to comment on the portal’s content and usability, ensuring it will be both useful and intuitive when launched in July. For questions or feedback, please contact Project Manager Kathy Hodder (khodder@bournemouth.ac.uk) or Research Assistant Arne Loth (aloth@bournemouth.ac.uk).

Security Research & Innovation Event 2016

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The 2016 Security Research and Innovation Event​ will take place at the World Forum in The Hague on 1 and 2 June. The event aims to provide a forum for discussion between European Policy Makers, industry and knowledge institutions on the key security challenges for Europe.

The programme includes the Security Research Event (conference) organised by the European Commission, thematic workshops, an innovation room and a matchmaking programme​. The topics for discussion cover:

  • Cybercrime and Law enforcement technologies​
  • ​Financial Investigations and Fraud​​
  • Space and Security​
  • Forensics​
  • Integrated border management​
  • Terrorism

The event is free of charge to attend but registration is mandatory.

(Source: www.ukro.ac.uk – Sign up to set your own personalised alerts.)

 

Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF) – events coming soon

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A number of current HEIF projects are running events over the next few months. Please feel to register to attend and/or circulate to contacts you may feel would be interested:

Explore the application of rewilding concepts to Dorset.

Date: Thursday 5 May

Venue: Charlton Down Village Hall, near Dorchester, Dorset. DT2 9UA

For more information on the HEIF project click here.

Click here for more information on the event and to register.

FoodBiz

Date: Wednesday 18 May

Venue: Executive Business Centre, Bournemouth University

Follow  on Twitter: @EU_FoodSMART and visit the project website  www.foodsmartproject.net 

Agenda and register for FREE

Psychiatric  Genetic Counselling Workshops

Dates: Various in June and July 2016

Venue: Bournemouth University

For more information on this HEIF project click here.

Click here for more information on the event and to register.

 

Biotechnology YES 2016 is open for applications

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Biotechnology YES is an innovative competition giving early career researchers from diverse backgrounds a practical insight into how to commercialise research and recognise the benefits of industrial collaboration, providing a springboard for their own career development into a multitude of sectors. The competition is delivered in partnership, funded by sponsorship,  draws on expertise from industry and the research community and aims to encourage an entrepreneurial culture in the UK postgraduate and postdoctoral base for the benefit of the UK economy.

The challenge for participants is to prepare an oral business plan presentation, in a team of four or five, for a hypothetical bioscience start-up company seeking equity investment. The plan is based on a plausible idea based on real markets and developed over the course of a three day residential workshop. The workshop encompasses presentations and mentoring sessions from leading figures in industry who give their time and advice for free. It culminates in the presentation of business plans to a panel of ‘equity investors’. These individuals come from industry and academia and have decades of experience and proven track records of professional success. Winners from the regional workshops progress to the final held in December.

Workshop dates will be posted on the Biotechnology YES and BBSRC websites once finalised and and include Syngenta, GSK and Unilever .

The competition is open to all bioscience researchers registered at a UK university not just those funded by BBSRC. However, if any of the workshops oversubscribed, Research Council funded researchers will be given priority.

Find out more and APPLY by visiting www.biotechnologyyes.co.uk or www.environmentyes.org

Biotechnology YES 2016 is open for applications until 27th May 2016.

How well do local authorities use data?

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Across England, local authorities are asking questions about how they can redesign services, save money and drive local economic growth.

  • How many people will need adult social care services in 5 years time?
  • Which children are most likely to enter the care system and what support might prevent this happening?
  • How can traffic flows, public transport, cycle lanes and town centres be optimised to help local businesses to grow?
  • Which households are most likely to fall into council tax arrears?
  • How can money be saved on refuse collection by only emptying bins when they are full?
  • How effective are local authority commissioned services at delivering positive social outcomes?

Nesta’s new research programme – the Local Datavores – aims to help local authorities use data better.

Nesta are always keen to hear from people working on data projects in local authorities and related organisations. If you would like to be involved in the research, or have heard about or been involved in any pioneering data science projects, please get in touch at tom.symons@nesta.org.uk

Amsterdam is European Capital of Innovation 2016

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Following the announcement of a shortlist of nine cities (including Glasgow and Oxford in the UK) in January, Amsterdam has emerged as the winner of the 2016 European Capital of Innovation Award.

The city was chosen for its “holistic vision of innovation related to four areas of urban life: governance, economics, social inclusion, and quality of life” by a panel of independent experts – “for embracing a bottom-up approach based on smart growth, startups, livability and digital social innovation.”

An interesting read and some interesting videos and presentations from  the winners and runners up and those short listed.

Useful information for those following research into such topics as  smart cities, innovation , ecosystems.

In full.

Press release.

 

What does Innovate UK’s latest delivery plan mean to industry ?

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Innovate UK   have just published the 2016/17 Delivery Plan. In it, you will discover some important changes in the way  they intend to support business innovation.

Key areas of the delivery plan include:

  • a new sector focus – that is easier for industry, investors and government to work with
  • changing the frequency and nature of our sector funding competitions – so that they are broader in scope than previously and form a single stream of innovation funding
  • forming a single ‘open’ funding programme –  for applications from any technology or sector
  • enhancing the role of our innovation networks – in providing guidance and support to innovative businesses both nationally and regionally

To find out more read more on their blog: A whistle-stop tour of our delivery plan or check  out the website

 

Inspiring Future Innovation Event

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Date: Tuesday 24 May

Time: 10.00am  – 4.00pm

Location: The Grange Road Business Park in Christchurch

Event information: A supply chain expo hosted by BAE Systems  in Christchurch and a chance to show innovation to not only BAE (who have people coming from far and wide) but others such as Cobham and Aish will also be exhibiting. This is the first annually held event hosted by  this organisation.  The aim being to  future innovation through showcasing BAE Systems’ own technology as well as technology from other companies. The event will provide a unique opportunity to discover new technology, as well as developing new relations with other companies within the supply chain, whilst raising the profile of exhibiting companies and providing a chance for networking and future collaboration opporuntities.

Registration is essential as there is a limited number of spaces available and will be assigned on a first come first serve basis.

To register your interest:  email –  inspiringfutureinnovation2016@baesystems.com and confirm whether you are interested in exhibiting and /or attending the event.

 

Universities increase income from business collaboration

Technology in the hands

UK universities earned £4.2 billion from provision of services to businesses and collaborative research in the 2014-15 academic year, up from £3.9bn the previous year.
The latest Higher Education Business and Community Interaction Survey (2014 – 2015), published on 7 April by the Higher Education Statistics Agency, looked at all publicly funded UK higher education institutions and their interactions with businesses and other organisations.
In 2014-15, the largest chunk of this income was from collaborative research involving public funding, which reached £1.26bn, up from £1.14bn in the previous year. This was a change in emphasis, as in 2013-14 universities gained most of their income from contract research. However, contract research earnings also increased between 2013-14 and 2014-15, from £1.2bn to £1.21bn.

Universities also upped their earnings from courses for business and the community by £35m to £715m, from regeneration and development programmes by almost £22m to £205m, and from intellectual property by £24m to £155m.

The analysis also includes information on the number of spinouts and start-up companies created by UK universities, and shows that the number of graduate start-up companies created in 2014-15 was 4,160, lower than the 4,581 companies started in 2013-14.

However, the total number of active firms with some involvement from a higher education provider in the UK was 13,045 in 2014-15, up from 11,856 in 2013-14.

The Higher Education Funding Council for England will publish its analysis of the data for England later in the year.

This article was posted in Research Professional.

You can set up your own personalised alerts including news  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.

 

 

Innovate UK launch new delivery plan – key sectors and funding opportunties included

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Innovate UK have launched their delivery plan for 2016/17 .

This  includes:

  • a new sector focus that is easier for industry, investors and government to work with
  • a 5-point plan to underpin activity across these sectors and drive productivity growth
  • clearer funding programmes that are easier to navigate
  • improvements to the way Innovate UK connects businesses to knowledge and partners
  • a stronger regional presence

With evidence of :”focusing ever more closely on scaling up SMEs” …

Clearer sector support has been established and these include four groups:

  • emerging and enabling technologies
  • health and life sciences
  • infrastructure systems
  • manufacturing and materials

Funding competitions for businesses are also to be simplified.

There will be 2 broad funding competitions covering each sector group per year, and 2 open competitions for applications from any sector or technology area. There will be other programmes and competitions in partnership with other government organisations.

Click here fore more information. 

Download the Delivery Plan.