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Midlands engine strategy

Midlands Innovation welcomes the publication of the Midlands Engine strategy

The Government has today published the Midlands Engine strategy, which will help position the Midlands as a major UK and European gateway, to unlock the region’s potential and support growth across every sector.

Sir David Greenaway, Chair of Midlands Innovation, which comprises six leading UK universities, including Loughborough, said: “We welcome the launch of the Government’s ambitious strategy for the Midlands Engine. The Midlands is the UK’s manufacturing powerhouse, has unique strengths and real potential to achieve more. The strategy clearly recognises this. As the research engine of the region, Midlands Innovation universities will play a critical role in supporting the delivery of the Midlands Engine strategy.”

Midlands Innovation pools the collective excellence of universities in the Midlands to power growth across the region. It led the delivery of one of the first Science and Innovation Audits for the region, which has been adopted by the Midlands Engine’s Innovation group.

The Midlands Innovation partnership is already making a difference, helping to create world-class centres of excellence. One such example is the Energy Research Accelerator (ERA) bringing together Midlands Innovation and the British Geological Survey in a cross-disciplinary hub of technology research and energy talent in the Midlands.

In addition it is working with Government and leading industrial partners from across the region on a major new transport technology initiative. In partnership with business, the Transport Innovation Accelerator will build on the historical strengths of the Midlands to create a national hub for transport innovation. This will act as a global beacon of excellence for technology companies with export potential, attracting talent and inward investment in the UK. 

Midlands Innovation universities are also part of the Leicestershire Enterprise Zones, focusing on automotive engineering, space technologies, life sciences, energy, advanced engineering and manufacture.

Loughborough University’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Robert Allison, said: “We are delighted to be contributing to the Midlands Engine through the Midlands Innovation partnership. By combining the research strengths of six of the UK’s leading universities in areas such as energy, health sciences and manufacturing, we are able to help drive forward innovation and economic growth across the region and beyond.”

Notes to editors

Midlands Innovation is a world-class research and innovation partnership, combining the collective excellence of six leading universities in the heart of the UK – Aston, Birmingham, Leicester, Loughborough, Nottingham and Warwick. It unites the power of university research with the unique strengths of Midlands industry to drive cutting-edge research, innovation and skills development. 

For the Energy Research Accelerator, the government has committed an initial capital investment of £60m (delivered through Innovate UK), and ERA has secured private sector co-investment of £120m for the first tranche of its work. This initial investment in itself is expected to generate a return of £323m.