Eden, Cumbria, The Lake District – A natural choice for business

Opportunity for SMEs to benefit from funded R&D programme

28 April 2016

SMALL and medium-sized businesses in are being invited to take part in business-led research and development (R&D) initiatives at Lancaster University

The University is encouraging them to take part in a funded three-year R&D scheme that will make £100,000 worth of support available to businesses.

Graduate researchers will be matched with companies that submit a research idea or problem that the researchers could help solve.

The graduates, from a range of science and technology disciplines, would be fully supervised and supported by an academic from Lancaster University.

Dr Mark Rushforth, head of business partnerships and enterprise at Lancaster University’s faculty of science and technology, said that the skills were available at the University for businesses to benefit from.

He said: “These Lancaster University initiatives offer north west businesses a real opportunity to scale-up their research and development capacity.

“As well as benefiting from the fresh thinking, talent and technical skills of Lancaster science and technology graduates, businesses can also tap into the expertise of our leading academics and cutting-edge facilities.”

The University is making facilities available to businesses taking part in the scheme including cyber-security laboratories, glasshouse spaces and controlled environment plant growth rooms, dilution refrigerators for some of the lowest temperature testing in the world, high-resolution mass spectroscopy, additive manufacturing facilities, and new £4m class 100 and class 1000 clean rooms.

Becky Gordon, operations manager at Lancaster University, said that any firm that was interested in the scheme should get in touch.

She said: “Companies that have a clearly defined project already can register online in minutes, and will be contacted by our business partnerships team.

“We would also like to hear from businesses that have an idea or challenge to talk through, or need us to help scope their project, or want to find out more about our other funded activities.”

There is a rolling call for three-year projects until July. and the majority of longer-term collaborative projects will begin in October. There will be a competitive process to select the projects with most potential for company growth.

Businesses wanting to take part can register their interest and learn more about the scheme here .