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IIB Staff

Staff members from the nominated IIB team

University of Exeter nominated for PraxisAuril KE Award

The University’s Innovation, Impact and Business (IIB) Team for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly are finalists for Team of the Year at the PraxisAuril KE Awards.

PraxisAuril is a world-leading professional association for Knowledge Exchange practitioners and the KE Awards recognise and celebrate the best Knowledge Exchange achievements across the PraxisAuril community, both nationally and internationally.This year the Awards will be hosted in an online ceremony on 24 June.

The IIB Team plays a central role within the University’s Research Development & Innovation (RD&I) activities in Cornwall. It facilitates and amplifies the work of researchers to make it more impactful, forges cross-sector partnerships with institutions across the region, and embeds the priorities of local small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) within research and policymaking. This work gives the SME community a stronger voice and provides it with direct channels to inform local, regional and national governance mechanisms. You can find out which businesses have been supported by the team online.

Chris Evans, Director of Regional Engagement said: “We are delighted that the University of Exeter’s IIB-Cornwall team has been shortlisted for this award in recognition of the impact that the team has made on the economy of Cornwall. Over the past three years, the team leveraged c£108m of investment into Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly to provide sector-focused RD&I Hubs that have supported over 750 businesses, driving innovation and supporting businesses to create new jobs. Through these activities the University will be well positioned to support the recovery of the Cornwall economy as it faces the impact of COVID 19 and the resulting economic crisis.”

The team manages each Hub to deal with the unique challenges faced by businesses in Cornwall, including the small size of enterprises, the dispersed nature of business clusters and the region’s peripherality, as well as providing bespoke solutions for individual enterprises. The RD&I Hubs in agri-tech, health, marine, space, georesources, defence, energy and the environment have driven impact and created the conditions for economic growth and prosperity in a region with historically low levels of productivity and R&D investment.

The Hubs also enable knowledge transfer between economic stakeholders and university researchers, directly shaping regional governance mechanisms and long-term social, economic and environmental strategies. The team’s swift, dynamic response to the COVID-19 pandemic is testament to the efficacy of this strategy, shifting to teleworking at full capacity in under a week whilst pivoting the focus of Hubs to basic business support and signposting to national-level funding.

Date: 15 June 2020

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