Research and Development (R&D) Partnerships

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R&D Partnerships at Birmingham City University

Are you a business or organisation in the private, public or third sector looking to conduct R&D activities to help you with product, service or policy development?

You might be looking for additional support from experts and specialists to help you deliver innovative solutions in your business or to address community, urban or environmental challenges in your public service.

Whatever your reason for R&D, a Research and Development Partnership with Birmingham City University (BCU) could offer you the expertise, skills and facilities you need to achieve success.

BCU is a practice-based university. We collaborate with businesses and organisations locally, nationally and internationally to deliver R&D activities and solutions that create real-world business or societal impact.

What is R&D?

Research and development (R&D) refers to activities that drive innovation for new or existing products and/or services within businesses, organisations and governments.

R&D Partnerships at Birmingham City University can support commercially focussed activities and those driven by societal challenges.

We encourage our academic researchers and students to be curious and use critical thinking to discover new topics, applications and solutions for our partners.

We engage in a wide range of R&D activities including but not limited to:

  • Helping businesses develop ideas, products or business models to build their competitive advantage and increase revenue, e.g. improving lightweighting of automotive parts with a manufacturer or working with the health sector on new ways of providing person centred care
  • Collaborating to develop new knowledge and insights, for example working with schools on the use of drama to help pupils explore social justice or using social sciences insights to advise policy makers

We’re open to working with any organisation on any topic that resonates with our academic community.

Why BCU for your
R&D activities?

Birmingham City University is made up of four faculties, each with academic experts and specialists in a range of subjects and interests:

  • Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment (CEBE)
  • Business, Law and Social Sciences (BLSS)
  • Arts, Design and Media (ADM)
  • Health, Education and Life Sciences (HELS).

As a practice based university we actively encourage businesses and organisations to partner with us on R&D activities.

Our partners gain additional expert & specialist support to drive success in their projects and we gain opportunities to develop new knowledge and solutions that deliver real world positive impact.

A selection of areas for collaboration are:

  • AR/VR for training in the automotive supply chain
  • Improving analytics of big data for a local authority
  • Developing person centred care with the health sector
  • Helping a small business modernise its operations through digital systems
  • Improving construction methods for a housing association
  • Magnesium light weighting
  • Sports and Optimal Performance
  • Overcoming and challenging psychological barriers
  • AR/VR and Knowledge based Engineering in medical training
  • Jute in Textiles
  • Creative Arts in India
  • Bio-Engineering and Medical Devices
  • Solar Energy for Smart Villages
  • Impact of cultural policy on specific communities
  • Architecture and landscape live brief projects
  • Future media live brief projects
  • AR/VR for product or service development
  • Block Chain in agriculture

How can I partner
with BCU for R&D?

If you’re a business or organisation within the private, public or third sectors based locally, nationally or internationally, and you’re looking for experts and specialist to help you with research and development activities, we invite you to enquire about a R&D Partnership with BCU.

Please send us an enquiry and we will contact you to discuss how we can help.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is this service free of charge?

Yes, accessing our academics and specialists is free.

We do however, expect you to commit time and resources to the project. There may also be costs associated with the project that fall outside the scope of our collaboration.

Am I eligible to use this service?

If you are a business or organisation within the private, public or third sectors, based locally, nationally or internationally, and are looking to partner with Birmingham City University on R&D activities in the following fields, then we welcome your application.

  • Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment (CEBE)
  • Business, Law and Social Sciences (BLSS)
  • Arts, Design and Media (ADM)
  • Health, Education and Life Sciences (HELS)
How long will I receive support for?

The duration of the R&D Partnership is dependent on your needs.

We will review your application and work with you to develop a working timescale to help you achieve your ambitions.

Where are you located?

If you are eligible for support, the Research & Development Partnerships team will work with you at either one of Birmingham City University’s campuses and/or your business location.

What is “GBSLEP” and do I need to be located in this region?

Unlike some of our other business support services, there is no requirement for Research & Development partners to be located within the GBSLEP region.

“GBSLEP” stands for the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership. As well as Birmingham and Solihull, the region covers Lichfield, Cannock Chase, Wyre Valley, East Staffordshire, Redditch and more.

I’ve made an enquiry, what next?

A member of the Research & Development Partnerships team will review your enquiry and be in touch shortly.