The Innovation Engine brings together Birmingham City University, Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, University Hospitals Foundation Trust, University of Birmingham, Amey and West Midlands Combined Authority to address business challenges in the city.
The project, supported by the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) aims to help at least 250 businesses in Birmingham Solihull to create new products and services and overcome identified health, sustainability and transport challenges.
The project involves personnel from the DMT Lab within the School of Computing and Digital Technology (Prof Cham Athwal, Alan Dolhasz and Dr Maite Frutos-Pascual), the Research, Innovation and Enterprise Team (Prof Ardavan Amini and Luis Hernandez-Munoz) and the Faculty of Arts, Design and Media (Kim Whitehall). Although the co-ordinators come from the Faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment, the project will bring in expertise from across the University.
As well as supporting established businesses, the Innovation Engine will also offer assistance to start-ups, including students who want to set up their own business. Alan Dolhasz noted that he is keen to see students involved with the project. The Innovation Engine will offer students opportunities to get experience and contacts within business, and encourage them to become more entrepreneurial. The business contacts developed may also offer opportunities for student placements and graduate employment.
Speaking about the project, Alan Dolhasz said: