The Centre for Digital Entertainment operated out of the University of Bath and Bournemouth University has, today, been awarded funding to continue its research and training within this growing industry.

In an announcement made by the Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has agreed to renew funding for the Centre for a further eight years.

The Centre for Digital Entertainment creates innovative funded research and development projects for the games, animation, visual effects, simulation and cultural industries.

It embeds doctoral researchers into companies where they work on research projects, studying for an EngD qualification while contributing positively to the industry in which they are working.

Professor Phil Willis, who is leading the Centre from the University of Bath, said: “Through our collaboration with Bournemouth University, our team here at the University of Bath is training doctoral researchers and contributing to research and development work that is supporting the growth of the digital entertainment sector.

“This important sector is one of the UK’s fastest growing industries, and highly skilled individuals are in demand. Through the Centre for Digital Entertainment we have trained 50 doctoral researchers, and have worked with 35 industry partners. This new funded announced today allows us to continue the Centre and is a reflection of the impact of this work on the UK economy.”

Students at the Centre for Digital Entertainment spend around 75 per cent of their time working in industry, where they are faced by the real problems experienced by professionals in the sector and contribute to the development of solutions.

The Centre for Digital Entertainment is one of five Centres for Doctoral Training that the University of Bath is involved in. Another pre-existing Centre has had its funding renewed, in Sustainable Chemical Technologies, and three new Centres, one in photovoltaics, one in water, and another in catalysis have also received funding.

Paul Golby, Chair of EPSRC, said: “Centres for Doctoral Training have already proved to be a great success and the model is popular with students, business and industry. These new centres will give the country the highly trained scientists and engineers it needs and they will be equipped with skills to move on in their careers. The standard of applications for Centres was very high and more could have been funded if we had the capacity.”

Professor Phil Willis said: “The EngD qualification undertaken by our doctoral researchers provides them with an intensive, broadly based research programme, incorporating a taught element, relevant to the needs of industry. We’re currently recruiting our next intake of doctoral researchers and continually look to work with new industry partners. We would be pleased to hear from anyone interested.”