Exeter University teams with science park in new STEMM venture

The agreement sees the university move the business side of its innovation centre to Exeter Science Park, as well as release multi-million-pound funding for its business incubator

The University of Exeter is to partner with Exeter Science Park in a new venture to boost innovation in science, technology, engineering, maths and medical (STEMM).

The agreement sees the university move the business side of its innovation centre to the science park, as well as release £2.25m funding to help support its business incubator, SETsquared Exeter, over the next 18 years.

“The University of Exeter has always been an active and collaborative partner in the Exeter Science Park, but this landmark agreement takes this one step further by focusing our combined efforts into developing a beacon for STEMM innovation in the South West,” said the university’s new vice-chancellor, Professor Lisa Roberts.

This kind of collaboration between start-ups and universities is going to be essential for our region’s post-Covid recovery – Professor Lisa Roberts

Science has long been close to Roberts’ heart.

A professor of virology, she arrived at Exeter this month having previously been responsible for research and innovation at the University of Leeds. She is also a board member of the Henry Royce Institute, the UK’s national voice for materials science research and innovation.

“Working together in this way, we can even further harness the university’s high-quality STEMM research and innovation for economic growth in the region,” added Roberts.

“This kind of collaboration between start-ups and universities is going to be essential for our region’s post-Covid recovery, helping businesses innovate and grow.”


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The agreement also paves the way for initiatives at the science park – such as the Environmental Futures & Big Data Impact Lab – to clinch new resources.

While the businesses renting space at Exeter Science Park currently employ around 500 people, that figure is anticipated to grow seven-fold by 2035.

“Our goal is to secure and create high-value jobs, enhance productivity and boost economic growth in the South West,” said Exeter Science Park CEO, Dr Sally Basker.

“This agreement gives us the opportunity to do that, as well as reinforcing Exeter Science Park’s position as the hub for STEMM-based business expansion in our region.”

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