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ImpactQM project launches

ImpactQM, Queen Mary, University of London’s ground-breaking new knowledge transfer project, has been formally launched today (Monday 16 November 2009).

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With funding of nearly £3m from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) over three years, ImpactQM aims to create a new generation of science and engineering professional – one who is equally at home in both academia and in industry.

The launch event focussed some of the key issues surrounding knowledge exchange and impact in research today. Speakers included Professor Adrian Smith, Director General of Science and Research (BIS), and Professor David Delpy, Chief Executive of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

Professor Delpy explained: “Here in the UK we need to be seen as equally great at knowledge transfer as we are at research. We need to create an environment in which impact and knowledge exchange can be encouraged, and seen as a natural part of the research process.”

ImpactQM will link early career researchers with selected industry partners, allowing them to work on projects which transfer Queen Mary’s leading edge EPSRC funded research into business, exploiting our existing strengths in materials, electronic and mechanical engineering, and computer science.

In turn, the early career researchers will be mentored in the skills required to transfer research into economic impact for the UK, leading to a new breed of researcher with both the technical and business abilities to succeed in an increasingly competitive environment.

Professor Adrian Smith, Director General of Science and Research, added: “We need to explore longer-term, more strategic ways of linking universities to industry and government, and ImpactQM is an excellent example of how that can be done.”

Other speakers at the launch event included Dr Lincoln Wallen, Chief Technology Officer at Dreamworks Animation; Professor Christopher M Bishop, Chief Research Scientist at Microsoft Research; and Professor Peter Grindrod, Mathematician and Entrepreneur.

ImpactQM Project Director, Professor Ursula Martin, added: “We hope ImpactQM will make a fundamental difference to the way universities, government and companies look at the impact of world-class science and technology research.”

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