The University of Manchester, a renowned center for scientific breakthroughs and innovation, recently showcased its cutting-edge AI and robotics research to the Minister for AI and Intellectual Property, Viscount Camrose. This visit aimed to highlight Greater Manchester’s central role in driving science and innovation in the United Kingdom.
By collaborating closely with partners including businesses, local government, and The University of Manchester, Greater Manchester has established itself as a thriving hub of innovation. From pioneering the splitting of the atom to inventing the first computer, this region has a rich history of groundbreaking discoveries.
During the visit, the Minister had the opportunity to witness some of the government-backed research projects in Manchester. These included the development of graphene applications at the Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (GEIC) and CRADLE’s ground-breaking innovations in robotics. Additionally, the Minister explored some of the initiatives supported by the £100m Innovation Accelerators programme, such as the Turing Innovation Catalyst, the Centre for Digital Innovation, and the Immersive Technologies Innovation Hub.
The visit culminated in a round-table discussion centered around the Greater Manchester Innovation Accelerator programme. Led by Innovate UK on behalf of the Department for Science, Innovation Technology, this initiative invests £100m in 26 transformative R&D projects. The aim is to expedite the growth of high-potential innovation clusters in Greater Manchester, Glasgow City Region, and the West Midlands.
Participants at the round-table represented three AI-related projects supported by the Innovation Accelerator. These included the Turing Innovation Catalyst, led by The University of Manchester, the Centre for Digital Innovation, led by Manchester Metropolitan University, and the MediaCity Immersive Technologies Innovation Hub, led by The Landing at MediaCityUK. Together with representatives from local government, they explored strategies to strengthen collaborations between these projects and maximize their impact.
Cllr Bev Craig, Leader of Manchester City Council and GMCA Lead for Economy and Business, lauded the visit as an opportunity to showcase Greater Manchester’s groundbreaking research and emerging AI sub-sector. She emphasized the region’s potential to harness the growing influence of AI on the economy and society, cementing its position as a leading digital city-region.
Through the Greater Manchester Innovation Accelerator programme, the region aims to pilot a new model of R&D decision making that empowers local leaders to leverage innovation for regional economic growth. This approach demonstrates a commitment to nurturing and sustaining a thriving ecosystem of AI and related technologies.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What is the Greater Manchester Innovation Accelerator programme?
The Greater Manchester Innovation Accelerator programme is an initiative led by Innovate UK on behalf of the Department for Science, Innovation Technology. It aims to support the growth of high-potential innovation clusters in Greater Manchester, Glasgow City Region, and the West Midlands through strategic investments in transformative R&D projects.
Which projects are backed by the Innovation Accelerator in Greater Manchester?
The Innovation Accelerator supports several AI-related projects in Greater Manchester, including the Turing Innovation Catalyst led by The University of Manchester, the Centre for Digital Innovation led by Manchester Metropolitan University, and the MediaCity Immersive Technologies Innovation Hub led by The Landing at MediaCityUK.
How does the Greater Manchester region benefit from AI and innovation?
Greater Manchester has positioned itself as a leading digital city-region, with an emerging sub-sector focused on AI. As AI’s impact on the economy and society continues to grow, the region is well-placed to leverage this trend for further growth and development.