Increasing impact through collaboration


Loughborough is well known for the globally important work it generates in partnership with business, public and voluntary organisations.

Our long tradition of working with external partners on the application of research to meet real-world challenges is quite unique, with 70% of our research adopting this collaborative approach.

From cutting-edge research and development projects to the provision of expert advice -we work with industry in a number of different ways; helping organisations to innovate, expand and improve their business performance.

“The boundaries between research, design, development and manufacture are becoming increasingly blurred, so it makes absolute sense to bring researchers and engineers together to ensure the fast pull through of technology to industry.”

Professor Robert Allison, Vice Chancellor, Loughborough University


Excellence across the board


Our research centres of excellence cover a diverse selection of themes, and show that our work is having an impact on so many aspects from our everyday life.

Rolls-Royce University Technology Centre (UTC) in Combustion System Aerothermal Processes

Delivering a fuel economy benefit worth $2.5 million

The Centre of Excellence in Gas Turbine Combustion Aerodynamics will position Loughborough University as a primary UK hub for aerospace engineering and technology.

The Centre will focus on the development of future low emission aerospace combustion systems that will reduce the environmental impact of aircraft, and bring together industrial problem-owners and academic researchers to ensure that new technologies are translated from theory to practice as quickly as possible.

The facility forms part of the Rolls Royce University Technology Centre. Formed in 1991, the world-leading research centre is a strategic partnership between Loughborough University and Rolls-Royce for advanced technology development and associated research.

Visit the Rolls Royce UTC website.

Centre for Research in Social Policy

Setting the Minimum Income Standard for the UK as the basis for the ‘Living Wage’

The Centre for Research in Social Policy (CRSP) specialises in applied research and policy analysis on issues around poverty and the living standards of low income households.

The independent research centre, based in the Department of Social Sciences, has built a national and international reputation for high quality applied policy research.

The Centre’s biggest role at present is the researching and analysis of ‘A Minimum Income Standard for the United Kingdom’. Funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, this is the leading standard of its kind in the UK, and is being used to set the living wage in the UK. It is also being replicated in other countries seeking to establish benchmarks for acceptable household income levels rooted in social consensus.

Visit the Centre for Research in Social Policy website.

Centre for Information Management

Big data opportunities for government, organisations and society

The Centre for Information Management (CIM) undertakes internationally recognised research for the benefit of individuals, organisations, government and society. This includes evidencing the significance and value of information; challenging thinking and practice around information management; and improving performance through analysis, interpretation and judgment of information.

The Centre works alongside many industrial partners including IBM, Jaguar Land Rover, Leicester County Council, Leicestershire Police, Microsoft and Rolls Royce.

Visit the Centre for Information Management website.

Maths Education Centre (MEC)

Researching the pedagogical practice designed to enhance Mathematical Learning

The MEC has an international reputation for providing excellence in the delivery of university-wide mathematics support, as well as research in teaching and learning mathematics. Through the Mathematics Learning Support Centre, we provide support which is distinctive and of high quality to any students needing help with basic mathematics and statistics.

The Centre has two interest groups which form the focus of our research activity:

Culture, Pedagogy and Identity: Designing, analysing and evaluating pedagogical practice.

Mathematical Cognition: Discovering how students understand mathematics.

Past and present projects to receive external funding have covered the development of early numerical skills, developing secondary education progress measures, measuring conceptual understanding, technology for teaching, the sources of arithmetic, and premature infants’ skills in mathematics.

Visit the Maths Education Centre website.

Animation Academy

Animation research, scholarship, practice, exhibition and conservation as a partner in the Association of British Animation Collections.

Loughborough University’s School of the Arts, English & Drama houses The Animation Academy, a centre for animation research, scholarship, practice and exhibition, embracing tradition and progress, education and industry, art and commerce; that is dedicated to excellence at a national and international level in all its activities.

The Academy offers postgraduate courses and research opportunities; project development with academic, cultural and commercial institutions; and funded research projects and initiatives.

All projects and initiatives within the Academy aim to preserve, conserve and promote British animation, for the purpose of research, exhibition and the advancement of British animation legacy and cultural heritage.

Visit the Animation Academy website.


Impact through partnerships


The impact of our research can also be measured by the integral part we play in several major national research developments and initiatives.

National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine (NCSEM)

An Olympic legacy project developing policies and practice to benefit the health and well-being of the nation

The NCSEM is one of three hubs in the UK, which together comprise the country’s first-ever National Sport and Exercise Medicine Centre of Excellence.

The Centre based on Loughborough campus brings together the research, education and clinical capabilities of the partner universities and NHS trusts involved, to facilitate the translation of research into education, training and clinical services. This includes patient care; research that will transfer into frontline patient care, and is aimed at improving the health and well-being of the nation; and postgraduate and continuing professional development (CPD) programmes, which will raise professional standards across the country,

Visit the NCSEM website.

Energy Research Accelerator (ERA)

Government investment in energy research in the Midlands

The Energy Research Accelerator, which involves the six Midlands Innovation universities and the British Geological Survey, aims to foster research and develop new technologies to shape the UK’s energy landscape over the next 40 years.

The innovative collaboration will tackle some of the biggest energy challenges facing the UK, and will bring together the region’s top experts and surrounding industrial base, to create a cross-disciplinary hub of technology research and energy talent to deliver a step change in energy innovation.

The project is focused on delivering results that will lead to the long-term transformation of our energy landscape, including making better use of primary resources; creating smarter energy systems; reducing our dependence on imported energy; enhancing our energy security, and helping to achieve the UK’s carbon reduction targets.

A number of early priorities in the project will help deliver new technologies and drive the behavioural change that will open new avenues for research and development over the coming years. These include storing energy efficiently, harnessing heating and cooling for transport and domestic applications, integrating smart networks, and the safe and sustainable use of fossil fuel resources.

Visit the Energy Research Accelerator website

UK Collaboratorium for research in Infrastructure and cities (UKCRIC)

The national infrastructure research community with £138m government funding

Working in partnership with academic experts from 14 other UK universities, Loughborough will play a key role in a new government funded project - the UK Collaboratorium for Research in Infrastructure and Cities (UKRIC).

The study has secured £138 million of Government funding, with 100% matched funding from other sources.  Outside national security and medicine it will be one of the largest collaborative research projects in the UK.

It will provide a knowledge base that supports the long-term functioning of the UK’s transport systems, energy systems, clean water supplies, waste management, flood defences and the development of SMART infrastructures.

Visit the UKRIC website.

Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC)

Loughborough is a founding member of the Manufacturing Technology Centre, part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult (HVM).

In partnership with the universities of Birmingham and Nottingham, and some of the UK’s major global manufacturers, Loughborough is applying leading technical knowledge and expertise to create products, production processes, and associate services which have the potential to bring sustainable growth and high economic value to the UK.

The Centre specialises in manufacturing technology and processes such as Intelligent Automation, Advanced Tooling and Fixturing, Electronics Manufacturing, High Integrity Fabrication, Manufacturing Simulation and Informatics, and Additive Manufacturing, all of which are particularly important to the high value manufacturing sector.

Work in the Centre is raising the UK’s competitive advantage by developing and demonstrating new technology on an industrial scale. It is challenging the boundaries of manufacturing and inspiring great British manufacturing on a global stage.

Visit the Manufacturing Technology Centre website.

Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC)

Within this £1 billion national network, our London campus hosts the Digital Engineering and Test Centre spoke. 

The Advanced Propulsion Centre was established to position the UK as the global leader for the production and development of low carbon propulsion technology, forging partnerships between those who have good ideas and those who can bring them to market.

It operates on a ‘Hub and Spoke’ model. The main ‘Hub’ is located at the University of Warwick, with ‘Spokes’ as centres of excellence throughout the UK.

The Digital Engineering and Test spoke is based at Loughborough University London. The centre uses techniques such as mathematical modelling, simulation and virtualisation to reduce the cost of new product introduction and accelerate the product development cycle. Advance computing techniques allow engineers to design and test complex parts and systems in a virtual environment; reducing the need for expensive prototypes that take a long time to produce, and bringing better products to market more quickly and at a lower cost.

Visit the Advanced Propulsion Centre website.


Collaboration at Loughborough


Find out more about our collaborative approach to research and the partners we work with by visiting our research webpages.



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