University receives BBSRC Excellence with Impact award

Receiving the award copyright: Andrew Davis, John Innes Centre

David Willetts with Professor Andy Cossins

The Institute of Integrative Biology and School of Life Sciences won the runner up prize at the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) Excellence with Impact Awards for greatest culture change.

The competition rewards university departments which are most active in embedding a culture that recognises the importance of economic and social impact alongside research excellence.

Professor Andy Cossins, Head of the Institute said: “Between 2008 and 2010, the then School of Biological Sciences and School of Life Sciences were closely monitored by BBSRC with a final visitation by the judging panel. Our citation from the judges emphasised the breadth of engagement from all quarters of the School and Institute.”

What the judges said….

The department impressed the judges with a culture change that was driven as much by the strong vision and commitment from senior staff as by the clear emphasis on recognising the contributions that can be made by more junior researchers. The department has recognised the need to co-ordinate impact activities, had set in place systems to record and assess impact.

Minister for Universities and Science, David Willetts, said: “These awards recognise the impact of bioscience both on the economy and society, through driving innovation, training highly-skilled people, improving businesses and public services and attracting foreign investment.”

Other members of the Impact team who were not at the ceremony were Professor Steve Edwards, previous Head of the School of Biological Sciences, Dr Heather Allison, Postdoctoral representative Dr Chris Lowe and postgraduate student Ewan Harney. Input was also acknowledged from Dr Geoff Wainwright from 2BioLtd and members of the Business Gateway team.

BBSRC team with David Willetts: Copyright Andrew Davis, John Innes Centre

Professor Andy Cossins, Professor Huw Rees, Impact Officer at the Institute, David Willetts, Professor Neil Hall from the Institute and Dr Milla Shah from Business Gateway

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