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New design research COINED by UCA and Brunel


The next Jonathan Ive could benefit from a new research project by the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) and Brunel University


industry to produce new processes and ways of thinking. The collaboration has been awarded £99,000 funding from the Joint Information Support Committee (JISC). Uwe Derksen, Assistant Director of Research and


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Enterprise at UCA, said: “This project is a great opportunity for students and university researchers to engage with industry in the areas of textiles, fashion design and product design. We hope that documenting and evaluating workflow processes with established businesses will enhance the value of creative designs, produce faster routes to market, better quality products and promote greater innovation.” The project, which will be within


UCA Rochester’s School of Fashion and the School of Design at Brunel University, will focus on expanding the boundaries of user-centred design, sustainable production, micro- electronics, digital cutting and printing, electronic weaving and conductive inks. Emphasis will be placed on


he Creative Open Innovation Network for Excellence in Design (COINED) aims to create and operate a new workflow for product and fashion designers which link academia and


the fostering of trust, openness and confidence by sharing knowledge and reflections, and the facilitation, capture and analysis of user feedback. Sharon Baurley, Head of Design at Brunel University


says: “COINED is an exciting opportunity for UCA and Brunel University London to explore commercial opportunities for research, as well as to test open innovation models for interdisciplinary design.” Uwe Derksen added: “Art and Design institutions have been


identified as incubators of Britain's creativity and we hope that this project will showcase both universities’ creative strengths and contribute to optimising innovation potential for industry, academics and students in the areas of fashion


design and product design.” COINED will utilise UCA’s consultancy service Edge, which provides businesses and organisations access to the University’s creative experts and state-of-the-art facilities.


Businesses given longer term view on opportunities UK’s innovation agency makes it easier to access TSB support


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K business is to gain a clear line of sight on upcoming opportunities, from the UK’s innovation agency. Thanks to new information published, businesses will be able to see how


up to £250m of new Government investment in around 60 competitions will lead to innovation projects and programmes designed to stimulate business growth. The aim is to ensure that businesses have all of the information they need to make plans to access support from the Technology Strategy Board. The news was welcomed by both Business Secretary


Vince Cable and Universities and Science Minister David Willetts. Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “Innovation is a key part of our plan for growth and the Technology Strategy Board is actively supporting industries where the UK is one step ahead of the competition. We already have some great industrial success stories, like our aerospace, energy and healthcare industries where innovations have been effectively translated into commercial use. I want to encourage this in other sectors. That is why the network


of Catapult centres, in particular the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, will give a big boost to supporting research and development that is aligned with strategic commercial objectives, strengthening our economy.” Universities and Science Minister David Willetts said:


“We are determined to maintain and strengthen our world leading position in science, innovation and research – that’s why the Government is investing £250m through the Technology Strategy Board to develop new and existing products and services. The Technology Strategy Board are experts in supporting innovative businesses, and hopefully by setting out the opportunities available in the coming months, more firms will decide to compete for investment.” Chief Executive Iain Gray said: “The Technology


Strategy Board is now in a position where it can provide a detailed longer term view on plans about new investment in priority areas, giving businesses up front information about some of


the important new opportunities that we are making available up until


March 2013.” The new plans are split into twelve thematic areas for investment and include five that address global challenges: energy, healthcare, built environment, food and transport. The projected financial commitments for the year in these areas are: up to £65.7m in healthcare; up to £37.5m in the built environment (including future cities); up to £26m in energy; up to £23.5m in transport; and up to £10m in food. This sits alongside investment in competencies such as space, high value manufacturing (including aerospace) and in technology areas such as biosciences. Information about these themed areas and further


planned investment is published in the Technology Strategy Board’s delivery plan 2012-13. The Delivery Plan also outlines a package of support for high potential SMEs, including a commitment to double the funding for this year for the Smart programme, a popular single company grant funding scheme. Around 70% of recipients of Smart awards are micro companies and over half are younger than five years old. Businesses and organisations are encouraged to engage with the Technology Strategy Board, and can find out more on its website at www.innovateuk.org.


INDUSTRIAL TECHNOLOGY • July 2012


david.b@atlas.co.uk


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