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Clusters across our campuses

The power of clustering is well documented, and numerous benefits come from the physical concentration of related businesses in one geographical area. These include, but are not limited to, increased productivity, faster innovation and new business creation. For big companies and small companies alike, nothing spurs productive innovation better than having your competitor in close proximity!

STFC understands that clusters are constantly changing as they respond to the shifting of the marketplace. Our clusters are born out of a deep knowledge of the UK economy and what is driving productivity and growth, and we align our own strategy with these. Through conducting regular surveys and working closely with each business on our campuses, we focus on nurturing and growing clusters where we recognise the emergence of a collaborative environment.

What is truly exciting about our cluster development is the innovation taking place across these groups. Businesses are gaining a competitive advantage within their sector from using technologies in new applications – from agricultural businesses using space technology to improve food production, to medical device manufacturers using high performance computing and big data analysis to improve patient care – we are enabling collaboration in a truly exciting way.

Harwell Space Cluster is the gateway to the UK space sector with 89 Space organisations employing 950 people.

Global space companies such as Airbus Defence & Space, Lockheed Martin and Thales Alenia Space have established a presence at Harwell, with activities ranging from the design of propulsion subsystems to satellite navigation systems. These are joined by a range of SMEs from start-ups in the European Space Agency Business Incubation Centre (ESA BIC) to rapidly growing companies such as Oxford Space Systems, Deimos Space UK, Rezatec and Neptec.

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With over 1000 people dedicated to healthcare and its related fields, Harwell’s HealthTec cluster is a global force. The cluster draws on the campus’s diverse expertise to deliver world firsts and life-changing innovations.

left-hand quote markGSK has benefited from engagement with the specialists at the world leading research facilities at the Harwell Campus. We have found the experts there to have an industry friendly approach to working with us, which accelerates innovation within our drug discovery programmes. We view the growing HealthTec cluster at Harwell as playing an increasingly important part in the UK’s innovation landscape.right-hand quote mark
Dr Malcolm Skingle, Director of Academic Liaison, GSK

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The EnergyTec Cluster at Harwell Campus has 35 organisations comprising of over 900 employees and aims is to bring together the multiple capabilities of Harwell with the surrounding regions to help address the UK’s energy challenges, and the economic opportunities they present.

Organisations such as the Faraday Institution, work with other UK public bodies, academia, companies and energy clusters to share knowledge, identify gaps and focus on areas where organisations complement each other.

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The HealthTec Cluster, led by STFC and the North West Coast Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) - the Innovation Agency and hosted at Sci-Tech Daresbury, aims to bring together these hubs of expertise from across industry, academia, public sector, investor networks and entrepreneurs to stimulate innovation and tackle global challenges.

left-hand quote markConnecting with the NW HealthTec Cluster is possibly the most important thing SMEs can do in their commercialisation journey. The true benefit of representation, platform, introductions and advice collectively, and from stakeholders such as STFC, Innovation Agency, Health Innovation Exchange and KTN has been incalculableright-hand quote mark
Phil Blything, CEO, Glow New Media

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Last updated: 08 July 2019


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