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UCLan triumphs in annual business and community engagement survey

22 May 2015

Lyndsey Boardman

University is top modern in North West in key areas

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) has excelled in the latest Higher Education Business and Community Interaction Survey (HEBCIS), coming top among the North West’s modern universities for its consultancy work, courses for businesses and the community, and its regeneration projects.

HEBCIS reports annually on the level of knowledge transfer between universities, businesses and community partners and is published by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). Overall, UCLan has increased its income revenues relating to business, research and community engagement by 4.1% taking the total to £26.03 million for the 2013/14 academic year.

The Executive Director of Research at UCLan, Professor Robert Walsh, commented: “The HEBCIS results demonstrate UCLan’s strength and competitive edge in both regional and national business interaction and knowledge transfer. They show that the University plays its part in stimulating enterprise, business growth and regeneration in the North West.

 

"I am delighted that UCLan continues to have such a vital position in sharing knowledge and expertise across the spectrum with young people, graduates and businesses on a local, regional and national scale."

“I am delighted that UCLan continues to have such a vital position in sharing knowledge and expertise across the spectrum with young people, graduates and businesses on a local, regional and national scale.”

The figures show an overall increase of £1.02 million across eight performance areas* including collaborative research ventures, consultancy work and contracts with commercial businesses. This continues an upward trend that began in 2011 and allows UCLan to maintain fourth place within the 12 North West universities for overall income generated by these revenue streams and when benchmarked against the 20 members of the University Alliance Group, it ranks third in this area.

A key highlight includes an increase of 31% for UCLan’s collaborative research income, which involves working with business partners to secure project funding from research funders such as the Research Council. This takes the figure to £2.949 million, the highest ever recorded for UCLan.

UCLan continues to excel in graduate start-up activities and is still the leading UK university for the number of start-ups still active after three years with an increase of 14%.

"We’re delighted that UCLan has once again been named the top University in the North West for graduate start-up businesses and second nationally for the number that are still active after three years."

Peter Rawling, UCLan’s Business Incubation Manager, commented on the results: “We’re delighted that UCLan has once again been named the top University in the UK for the number of start-ups still active after three years. It is a great achievement of our students and graduates and demonstrates their commitment and entrepreneurial spirit.”

Another record figure was for income generated through consultancy work, which rose from £7.33 million in 2012/13 to £8.41 million in 2013/14. The survey shows a dramatic increase in the number of people who attended free events hosted by UCLan, such as the annual Lancashire Science Festival, which leapt from 123,735 attendees in 2012/13 to 362,633 in 2013/14.

There has also been a significant rise in the University’s regeneration and development income from £423,000 to £2.138 million and a record of 22 patent applications for this academic year. This was the second best year-on-year performance within the North West universities and when measured against the University Alliance Group.