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The Future of Engineering Research An EPSRC Perspective Julia Higgins Chairman EPSRC.

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Presentation on theme: "The Future of Engineering Research An EPSRC Perspective Julia Higgins Chairman EPSRC."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Future of Engineering Research An EPSRC Perspective Julia Higgins Chairman EPSRC

2 The Future of Engineering Research EPSRC and my experiences Engineering landscape Engineering highlights Looking to the future… opportunities and priorities

3 The importance of Engineering Research Concorde, computer games, mobile-phones, gene sequencing... Engineering, of any description, is an art of the possible. It happens at the junction between what is materially possible and what is humanly possible. Its course is shaped by the agendas and priorities and resources and hopes and illusions of a society. Engineering is where science intersects with the way we live. Francis Spufford, Backroom Boys: the secret return of the British Boffin, 2003.

4 Proposed Grand Challenges Energy Environment Security Quality of Life EPSRC Newsgroup Awards 2003: capturing the publics imagination Rehabilitation engineering for spine-injured patients Steven Salters drought-busting technology Energy-saving microwaving of rocks for grinding

5 EPSRCs Engineering Portfolio Current portfolio

6 Engineering landscape current portfolio: research themes

7 EPSRC highlights in engineering Building on Excellence Innovative Manufacturing Research Centres (£75m currently committed) Sustainable Urban Environment Consortia (£18m currently committed) Platform Grants Portfolio Partnerships

8 Highlights - IMRCs Centres of excellence in manufacturing engineering Currently 15 IMRCs - others planned £1.5M-£14.5m over 5 years 2 nd annual review completed

9 Highlights - IMRCs Bath Innovative Manufacturing Research Centre (x2) Bath Innovative Manufacturing Research Centre Cambridge Engineering Design Centre Cambridge Institute for Manufacturing Cardiff IMRC – April 2004 Cranfield Innovative Manufacturing Research Centre Imperial College Built Environment Innovation Centre Liverpool e-Business Research Centre Loughborough Innovative Manufacturing and Construction Research Centre Loughborough Innovative Manufacturing and Construction Research Centre

10 Highlights - IMRCs Multidisciplinary Assessment of Technology Centre (MATCH) – Brunel; Birmingham; KCL; Nottingham; QUB Nottingham Innovative Manufacturing Research Centre (NMRC) Nottingham Innovative Manufacturing Research Centre (NMRC) Reading Innovative Construction Research Centre Salford Centre for Research and Innovation Scottish Manufacturing Institute– Heriot-Watt UCL Bioprocessing Centre Warwick Innovative Manufacturing Research Centre

11 Highlights – SUE consortia Developed through workshops 14 SUE Consortia (in four clusters) Urban and built environment Waste and pollution Transport Metrics, knowledge management and decision making

12 Highlights – SUE consortia Cluster 1: Urban and built environment VivaCity: Urban Sustainability for the 24-Hour City (Development of Design-making Tools and Resources) Innovation in Design, Construction and Operation of Buildings for People The Sustainable Urban Form Consortium (SUFC) Cluster 2: Waste and pollution Waste Resource Management in Urban Environments Sustainable Urban Brownfields: Integrated Management (SUB:RIM) Water Cycle Management for New Developments: WAND

13 Highlights – SUE consortia Cluster 3: Transport Sustainability of Land Use and Transport in outer Neighbourhoods Futures: Future Urban Technologies: Undertaking Research to Enhance Sustainability Design and Implementation Support Tools for Integrated Local Land Use, Transport and the Environment Accessibility and User Needs in Transport Cluster 4: Metrics, knowledge management and decision making Pollutants in the Urban Environment Metrics, Models and Toolkits for Whole Life Sustainable Urban Development Knowledge Mapping and Bringing About Change for the Sustainable Urban Environment Consortium for Decision Support and Socio-economic Barriers and Incentives

14 Highlights: Engineering Programme Platform Grants £400K for 5 years supporting people Encouraging stability and flexibility for our leading engineering groups Currently fund over 60 platform grants Portfolio Partnerships Stability for internationally leading research teams Two pilots in place

15 Highlights: Engineering Programme Public engagement: raising awareness of engineering research International review of engineering research November 2004 Showcase event 17 th November 'A Celebration of UK Engineering Research & Innovation Changing the Engineering panel structure to reflect the changing nature of engineering

16 Revised Engineering Panel Structure Complexity of the System Examples:Construction Supply Chain Building operations including aesthetics and environment Fire tests of concrete slabs / Air flow around buildings Systems of Systems Systems Components Flow (Engineering Science)

17 Looking to the Future the lay of the land has changed in engineering research: we need to recognise this and adjust our strategies and plans accordingly… Phil Ruffles, 2003 The Future of Engineering Research Supply of talented engineers Exploiting engineering research New ventures

18 Supply of talented engineers 16 EngD Centres Raising awareness of Engineering research regional evaluation mentoring for Platform Grant Holders applying for PPAs Academic Fellowships £125k, five years more attractive and stable paths into academia for contract researchers Roberts review PhD stipends Post Doc Salaries Differential stipends & salaries in shortage areas

19 Exploiting engineering research EPSRC Sector teams Strategic Partnerships BAE Systems: £30m over 5 years (total investment) Non Destructive Evaluation Centre: £12.5m over 5 years (total investment) Carbon Trust: £20m over 3-4 years Co-funded Chairs: e.g. Rolls Royce

20 New ventures: Designing for 21st Century formation of a new diverse community with a common reference framework and shared understanding new ways of design thinking to meet the challenges of inclusive design for the 21st Century society support leading-edge design research: self-reflective, socially aware, economically enterprising & internationally significant. AHRB & EPSRC At least £4m over next five years Launch of clusters on 22nd March

21 Extreme environments Challenges in extreme environments for science & engineering Innovation from pushing the boundaries feeding into the mainstream New ventures Crossing boundaries Identified in business plan Linking with Materials, Physics, Chemistry…

22 Speculative Research in Engineering £3M allocated in 2004 Call for cluster proposals published Proposals: highly speculative challenging current conventions exploring new boundaries adapting novel techniques to different field New ventures

23 conclusions building on engineering research excellence creating opportunities and flexibility for researchers supporting talent and innovation seeks innovative ways to support research & training

24 The EPSRC DTI Office of Science and Technology RCUK CCLRCBBSRCESRC Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council MRCNERCPPARC AHRB

25 EPSRC and the National Research Cycle Policy £ Opinions £ Knowledge People PUBLIC Priorities £ GOVERNMENT ACADEMIA INDUSTRY AND COMMERCE EPSRC Partnership Knowledge

26 The EPSRC The UKs funding agency for research & training in engineering & physical sciences. Invests more than £500m year in research. Actively promotes public awareness of science & engineering.

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