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Cymraeg

Minister congratulates Cardiff University on record research year

13 September 2010

Cardiff University landed a record £150 million in new research funding last year – in a climate where the competition between universities and other research organisations for external grants and contracts is more intense than ever.

The new research grants bring outside investment into Wales, create new collaborations with industry and deliver research results which will directly improve the nation’s health, sustainability and competitiveness.

Welsh Assembly Government Education Minister Leighton Andrews described the Cardiff achievement as "a major boost for the Welsh economy."

The record total represents an increase of 73% on the 2008-09 figure and a 36% increase on Cardiff University’s previous record of £110 million. The University’s strengths in healthcare, science, engineering, social science and the humanities have all played a part in this success. Highlights have included new grants to advance knowledge in areas such as:

• Unlocking the vital role of t-cells in the human immune system
• Use of neural stem cells in the repair of spinal cord injuries
• Developing new Low Carbon technologies for Wales
• Leadership of a European consortium on aeroplane emissions
• Development of energy-generating walls and roofs for buildings
• Study of the rare books collection preserved for Wales in March
• Improvement of Welsh language teaching to adults

Research grants are awarded competitively. At a time when funders’ budgets have tightened, Cardiff has invested considerable effort in further improving the quality of its bids and this has resulted in significant improvement in its application success rates.

This year the University won increased funding from business, Europe, the Welsh and UK Governments and the highly prestigious UK Research Councils. The University’s School of Medicine alone won total grants and contracts worth £74 million.

The Vice-Chancellor, Dr David Grant, said: "This year’s success is all the more impressive at a time when funding from all research bodies has tightened. The University is working hard to improve its success rate with bids to the research councils and is encouraging innovative and high quality proposals to a range of funders.

"These awards reflect confidence that Cardiff University research delivers real benefits to society, the environment and the economy. It is likely that the funding climate will be challenging for some years to come, but I am confident that Cardiff’s track record of excellent awards will allow us to build further on this year’s achievement."

The Education Minister, Leighton Andrews, said:

"Cardiff University’s success in recording its best-ever year for winning new research funding is excellent news. Success at gaining external R&D funding is essential to Wales’ future competitiveness and is an absolutely crucial element of our For Our Future agenda and Economic Renewal Programme. This achievement is a major boost for the Welsh economy, both bringing in outside investment and ensuring strong collaboration between our Higher Education sector and industry.

"I would like to congratulate Cardiff University on its success which fully demonstrates that Wales has world-class centres of research excellence which can compete with the best."

Notes to Editors

For further information, and case studies of successful new Cardiff University research awards contact:

Stephen Rouse,
Public Relations Office,
Cardiff University.
029 2087 5596

E-mail: RouseS@cardiff.ac.uk

Cardiff University
Cardiff University is recognised in independent government assessments as one of Britain’s leading teaching and research universities and is a member of the Russell Group of the UK’s most research intensive universities. Among its academic staff are two Nobel Laureates, including the winner of the 2007 Nobel Prize for Medicine, Professor Sir Martin Evans.

Founded by Royal Charter in 1883, today the University combines impressive modern facilities and a dynamic approach to teaching and research. The University’s breadth of expertise in research and research-led teaching encompasses: the humanities; the natural, physical, health, life and social sciences; engineering and technology; preparation for a wide range of professions; and a longstanding commitment to lifelong learning.

Visit the University website at: www.cardiff.ac.uk