Imperial expands data science and innovation collaborations


Imperial's data science institute

Imperial is expanding its data science and innovation collaborations with Huawei to enable cutting edge discoveries for the benefit of society.

The five-year collaboration was unveiled at the 4th annual Times Higher Education Academic Salon and builds on almost a decade of work together.

This long-term partnership will see Huawei become the Lead Sponsor of Imperial’s Venture Catalyst Competition (VCC) to support student entrepreneurialism and further support the build out of the UK’s innovation ecosystem, and lead technology sponsor of the annual public engagement event, the Great Exhibition Road Festival, in South Kensington. The VCC was previously sponsored by Blenheim Chalcot for three years and supported 86 student startups.

Huawei will also become a Founding Partner of the Leonardo Centre - a new initiative at Imperial College Business School that explores and experiments with new ways of doing business in order to regenerate economies, communities and natural environments around the world.

The new partnership will see Huawei sponsor Imperial's Venture Catalyst Challenge

Digital innovations

Iam Walmsley
Provost, Professor Ian Walmsley gave the key note speech at the Academic Salon

Professor Ian Walmsley, Provost of Imperial College, said: “We work to be at the cutting edge of discoveries and technologies for the benefit of society. Our partnership with Huawei has already yielded some considerable advances, and we look forward to expanding this collaboration further.

“Huawei’s expertise in wireless technology will help our researchers, students and partner enterprises to lead the next generation of digital innovations.”

Victor Zhang, Huawei’s Vice-President and head of the London office, said: “We are pleased to be playing our role in helping to create an environment where research can explore the boundaries of 5G and AI technologies and rethink what’s possible in the 5G and AI world.

"We are delighted to provide our world-leading technologies and experiences to an academic partner to support innovation and the creation of ecosystem. It is important for industry and academia to work together for growing the economic and social value as a whole."

Academic Salon

The theme of the 4th annual Times Higher Education Academic Salon, supported by Huawei, is “Where next for UK research?”

Former Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Baroness Morgan of Cotes said: "I saw first hand when I was in government the strength and resilience of our academic sector.

"We mustn’t lose sight of the world-leading status of our UK universities, and despite all these challenges I am confident that that will continue. Research and innovation is at the heart of the UK government’s industrial strategy and a significant financial investment from the UK government in that.

"I think this academic salon is a prime example of collaboration between government, business and academia."

Transforming society

As part of the partnership, Huawei will provide 5G indoor wireless network and AI Cloud platform, at one of Imperial’s campuses. This facility will support the research work of Imperial’s Data Science Institute (DSI); the Leonardo Centre; the College’s Enterprise Lab, and the wider SME community that Imperial collaborates with.

Professor Francisco Veloso, Dean of Imperial College Business School, said: “This partnership with Huawei will help enhance our mission to transform society through world-class research that addresses the key challenges facing businesses today.

"In today’s uncertain business landscape, there’s a much greater need than ever before for business leaders to experiment with and scale innovative enterprises that have a long-lasting societal impact. Imperial College Business School is conducting groundbreaking research on sustainable business and we look forward to strengthening our position on this topic through this collaboration.”


Stephen Johns

Stephen Johns
Communications Division

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Industry, China, International, East-Asia, Global-challenges-Data, Enterprise, Big-data
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