Discover and share good practice for smarter working universities

Productive efficiencies in higher education – three case studies

These case studies were selected from the report ‘Making the best better – efficiency and effectiveness in higher education’, produced by Sarah Jackson of the N8 Research Partnership on secondment to BIS.
Scientist using electron microscopy equipment

Sharing equipment – a welcome efficiency?

The dramatic cuts in capital funding in 2011 rocked academics working in scientific research. However as Lancaster University VC Mark Smith reports, this shock to the system has enabled the concept of equipment sharing to gain real ground.

CREST – Consortium for Research Excellence, Support and Training

Provides an innovative model for how to further research excellence and promote institutional and interdisciplinary collaboration.

Deal improves access to cloud and high performance computing for scientists

Researchers are beginning to rely on cloud computing to drive breakthrough science at breakneck speeds. An agreement between Jisc and Amazon Web Services in the UK makes it possible for all scientists to have their very own supercomputers in the cloud.
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Jisc’s shared data centre boosts research efficiency

Jisc has developed a shared data centre for the UK’s academic research when others have tried unsuccessfully before. In this blog post, Jisc's Phil Richards explains the secret behind the project's success and shows how it is already boosting research efficiency for the founding members.
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Graphene innovation centre to boost portfolio of shared assets

A Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (GEIC) being developed at the University of Manchester will bolster the portfolio of shared assets supporting collaborative research, after it was awarded £15 million of funding from HEFCE.

Portsmouth University investigates sharing IT facilities with city schools

Portsmouth University, together with Portsmouth City Council, has won funding from the Higher Education Funding Council (Hefce) to investigate ways of sharing resources.
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S-Lab – time for consolidation and long-term planning

S-Lab, the programme that aims to create more sustainable laboratories, has grown rapidly and now needs to consolidate, and become less dependent on a few individuals,...
Scientist using electron microscopy equipment

The future for sharing

Professor Sir Ian Diamond’s report on efficiency in higher education highlighted universities’ achievements in asset sharing and called on them to build on this work. Rosie Niven rounds up the views of leading thinkers in the sector around the future of sharing and collaboration in research.

Do you speak laboratory?

The S-Lab: Supporting World Class Science programme aims to improve laboratory efficiency and effectiveness in all dimensions, including scientific value, resource efficiency and staff well-being. S-Lab director Peter James discusses the crucial role of estates and facilities in supporting these objectives.