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Southampton’s EPSRC grants break the £200 million mark

Published: 
20 May 2015

The University of Southampton has, for the first time, surpassed £200m active funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

The EPSRC’s online ‘Grants on the Web’ institutional profile provides a ‘snapshot’ of current projects funded by the research council. This shows that the University is 6th nationally for the total value of grants, managing a portfolio of 154 EPSRC-funded projects worth £200,114,884 with individual grants ranging from just under £40,000 to over £8m in value. The grants support a wide range of activities across the University – from Aeronautics and Chemistry to Physics and Social Sciences.

We are ranked first nationally for our Programme Grant portfolio (in terms of value - £53m with individual Programmes ranging from £3.1 to £7.2m), and second nationally equal with Cambridge in terms of number (10). Programme Grants are large collaborative research initiatives involving academia and industry and addressing significant global challenges.

Amongst the number of major EPSRC projects supported are Doctoral Training Centres in Web Science, Next Generation Computational Modelling and Sustainable Infrastructure Systems. The EPSRC has also provided funding for Southampton’s Industrial Doctoral Centre in Transport and the Environment and the Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Photonics as well as a major social sciences project to investigate The Care Life Cycle: Responding to the Health and Social Care Needs of an Ageing Society.

The Faculty of Engineering and the Environment manages the largest number of current EPSRC grants (52 grants worth over £48.7m). Within the Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering, the University’s Optoelectronics Research Centre is currently managing 30 grants worth over £44.4m and Electronics and Computer Science has 26 grants worth over £40.3m.

Research Councils are the prominent funders (44 per cent) of research for the University with the EPSRC providing the largest amount of awards overall. The success of the University has supported a significant growth in annual research income (forecast to be over £114.9m in 2014/15) exceeding £100m for the last two years with research grants and contracts secured from a multitude of funders including Research Councils, medical charities, industry and the European Commission.

In March, the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) revealed that the University’s QR (quality research) grant for 2015-16 will be increased by 2.17 per cent to £45.4m. This welcome increase in a difficult funding climate is testament to Southampton’s leading, internationally excellent research profile as evidenced by our recent performance in the Research Excellence Framework 2014.

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