The funds are being made available to UK universities to help turn the country’s best science ideas into good business – creating successful companies, growing industrial collaboration, and fostering more entrepreneurship.
The funding comes from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), the UK’s main funding agency for scientific research. They will award ‘Impact Acceleration Accounts’ to 31 leading research universities across the UK.
The University can confirm that it will receive £1.36million from the account and that details of successfully funded projects will be made available in coming months.
The funding will give the University’s best scientists and engineers the support they need to deliver greater collaboration with industry, bridge the gap between the laboratory and the marketplace, and help them become better entrepreneurs.
Professor Jane Millar, Pro Vice Chancellor for Research, said: “Being awarded significant Impact Acceleration Account funding by the EPSRC is testament to the high level of cutting edge research carried out at the University of Bath.
“We have invested heavily in our research portfolio, employing outstanding research staff at the forefront of their given fields, and providing well-equipped, purpose-built facilities to enhance and support the cutting-edge work being carried out.
“The University is home to a diverse range of research that makes a real difference to society.”
Vince Cable, Business Secretary, said: ““The UK's scientists are some of the most innovative and creative people in the world, but they need support to take their best ideas through to market.
“This investment I'm announcing today will help our leading universities become centres of innovation and entrepreneurship, generating commercial success to fuel growth.”
The Impact Acceleration Accounts will support the very early stage of turning research outputs into a commercial proposition – bridging the “valley of death” between a research idea and developing it to a stage where a company or venture capitalist might be interested. It will also allow universities to fund secondments for scientists and engineers to spend time in a business environment; improving their knowledge and skills to that they return to the laboratory with a better understanding of the way companies operate and the challenges they face.
EPSRC chief executive Professor Dave Delpy said: “The research we support is recognised as outstanding on the international stage. These awards aim to make a step change in the impact that has on society: generating new business opportunities which drive economic growth, creating better, more informed, public policy.”