Biochemical Engineering Research Strategy

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Context

The UCL Department of Biochemical Engineering is at the forefront of bioprocess research and is the largest centre in the UK. In the 2014 REF, 75% of academic staff were rated as ‘world leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. Our interdisciplinary Advanced Centre for Biochemical Engineering (ACBE) coordinates bioprocess research and training collaborations with more than a dozen UCL departments, a similar number of external university partners and over 40 international companies.  Our research aims continually to innovate the biomanufacturing of chemicals, medicines and therapies, by harnessing biological systems and biotechnology.

 

Three major themes run through our research programmes:

 

Over 75% of our research projects are collaborative with industry and all address strategically significant issues, frequently on a truly global scale. This close working relationship with industry provides unparalleled opportunities for our research teams to tackle long-term problems with leaders in the sector and is a hallmark of the UCL approach.

 

Vision

UCL Biochemical Engineering aims to retain its position as internationally leading in Biochemical Engineering, Bioprocessing and Biological Engineering Research, for addressing key biomanufacturing challenges.  These challenges are emerging from novel advanced therapies, that include stratified protein therapies, cell therapies, and vaccines.  They are also emerging from the increased need for sustainable chemicals manufacture via a global bioeconomy.

 

 

Priorities

  • To consolidate our position as number one UK Biochemical Engineering Department in the next REF.
  • To establish ourselves among the top Biochemical Engineering / Biological Engineering Departments in the world.
  • To support research-career development at all levels, but specifically to nurture the most talented early career researchers and under-represented groups.
  • To raise department profile through: publications in the highest venues, leadership of large grants, editorial roles in the top journals and conferences, representation on key committees and advisory boards.
  • To enhance internal communication among research groups through departmental seminars and research meetings focused on key societal challenges or emerging topics of interest.
  • To increase the synergy between Biochemical Engineering and a diverse set of other UCL departments, UCLH and other institutions.
  • To maximize the impact of Biochemical Engineering research via industry collaborations, IP generation, licensing, spin-out of companies, and public engagement activities.
  • Recruitment of excellent researchers, including Lecturers, Professors and Research Fellows, as well as technical staff who answer the Department’s strategic needs.
  • Foster increased research activity in Global Research Challenges, in collaboration with developing countries.
  • Utilising our Industrial Advisory Board to invigorate the departmental activities via a stronger synergism between research, education and outreach to all stakeholders.

 

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