Royal Commission boosts UK Research & Development with Fellowships linking academia and industry

  • £100,000 awarded to 15 innovators to support industrial innovation in sectors including sustainability, medicinal and wellness.
  • Projects selected include recycling nuclear material for cancer treatment, improved fertiliser efficiency and circadian rhythm-friendly lighting.
  • Applications for the 2024 Industrial Fellowships are now open.

Some of the UK’s brightest innovators have been awarded the prestigious Industrial Fellowships by the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851.

This year’s cohort reflects the adaptability of an emerging generation of scientists and engineers, touching on sectors including sustainability, medicine, and wellness, to tackle the issues impacting the world today.

Supporting research talent has remained at the heart of the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 since its establishment by Prince Albert. Today, the Commission enables UK R&D to remain competitive with international efforts through Fellowships, Scholarships and Awards, with a total imbursement of almost £4m per year.

The Industrial Fellowships are a crucial bridge between academia and industry to promote impactful research. Students work alongside academic and industrial partners to develop solutions to issues currently faced by members of their field.

To support a diverse array of sectors, the Commission has chosen innovators tackling projects including the recycling of nuclear materials to advance emerging cancer treatments and the creation of circadian rhythm-compatible lighting systems designed to enhance wellness, particularly for individuals with dementia.

Industrial Fellowships provide funding of up to £100,000, covering salary contributions, university fees and costs for doctoral studies for up to 3 years of research. The output of such an investment is estimated at £2 million a year in intellectual property, developing crucial new technologies and scientific advances that advance research fields and British industrial players. During the Fellowship, students are provided with support from academic and industrial supervisors.

John Lavery, Secretary at the Royal Commission said, “Bringing industry and academia together can yield the technologies and processes to ensure the UK remains a science and engineering superpower.

This year’s Fellows are working towards solutions to global challenges in health and sustainability and the Commission is proud to be able to support them in their journey.”

The full list of 2023 Industrial Fellows is: