Tributes have been paid to Lord Bhattacharyya, the founder of Warwick Manufacturing Group at the University of Warwick, after he died aged 78.
Born in Bangalore in 1940, Lord Bhattacharyya was a British-Indian engineer who was made a life peer by the Labour party in 2004. He joined the University of Warwick in 1980 and became both professor of manufacturing systems and the founder of WMG.
Sir David Normington, pro-chancellor of the university, said: “Long before I joined the University of Warwick Council, I knew of Professor Lord Bhattacharyya as an adviser to successive prime ministers and secretaries of state and a tireless advocate for the UK manufacturing industry.”
Once he joined Warwick, Sir David went on, Lord Bhattacharyya revealed an “extraordinary commitment to the University of Warwick, to Coventry and the West Midlands and to UK plc. He was a force of nature. He pushed boundaries, he changed lives, he created jobs, and he set the standard for how universities should work with industry.”
Stuart Croft, Warwick’s vice-chancellor, said that Lord Bhattacharyya’s “wisdom, passion and advocacy of the importance of manufacturing, technology, research, teaching and training” had “helped guide regional, national and international leaders, business figures and policy makers”.
Professor Croft added: “He has helped preserve and create jobs and transform companies, economies and individual lives, above all in our region. We mourn the passing of a unique man, but we also celebrate all that he has achieved and are thankful that those achievements will have a massive impact for years to come.”