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Universities to Develop World-Class Scientists

Posted by Richard Ward in ,

Image courtesy of Flickr, Creative Commons

Universities in the North East have been awarded £28 million to set up research centres that aim to develop experts to tackle some of society's more pressing challenges.

Newcastle University, Northumbria University and Durham University have been awarded the funds to develop expertise in molecular sciences, power electronics, renewable energy and soft matter.

Newcastle University will lead three new Centres for Doctoral Training with the aim of developing expertise in designing future cities, enabling the transition from fossil fuels to electric vehicles and designing new drugs to fight disease.

Northumbria University will team up with Newcastle and Durham to provide a national centre for renewable energies, whilst Durham's Centre for Doctoral Training in Soft Matter for Formulation and Industrial Innovation will result in research into smart surfaces, recyclable plastics and new medicines.

The projects form part of Government's plans to improve the UK's record on research and development and boost the economy by transforming academic research into real-world products and services.

Pro Vice Chancellor of research strategy and resources at Newcastle University, professor Brian Walker, said: "These awards from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council will give us the resources we need to train more than 180 extra PhD students and equip them with the knowledge and skills that we urgently need to keep the UK at the forefront of research and innovation."

"The awards were won in an intense national competition and recognise the excellence and creativity of our researchers here in the North East of England."

Almost £450 million will be awarded to universities around the UK in what is one of the UK's largest investments into research and development.