CICs win innovation prize

Yorkshire and Humber’s Centres of Industrial Collaboration have triumphed in RegioStars 2008, awards designed to recognise regional growth through innovation


Yorkshire and Humber’s Centres of Industrial Collaboration (CICs) have triumphed in RegioStars 2008, European awards designed to recognise regional growth through innovation.



The network of 12 CICs is based in university departments across Yorkshire and Humber and connects academic experts with businesses in need of technical support. They were shortlisted against 71 nominations from across 18 European states and won the award for technology transfer to SMEs.



Since their launch in 2003 the CICs have collaborated with business over 1400 times and generated in excess of £50m research income for the region. Their success stories include helping a Yorkshire silversmith improve their business by developing a form of sterling silver that doesn’t tarnish and working to produce a touch sensitive fabric.



Jim Farmery, head of innovation at Yorkshire Forward, said: ‘Winning the RegioStars award shows that the CICs can offer our region’s businesses some of the best advice and expertise in Europe and I strongly encourage them to take advantage of this wherever possible.’



The RegioStars’ judges added: ‘This cross-regional project was seen as an outstanding example of a sustainable project that triggered collaboration and self-financing. The project was based on an analysis of the needs of regional industry and has been able to bring this to the CICs. In addition no subsidies were provided to companies or research groups – the funding covered the incremental costs of providing professional business/university interface and promoting their services.’