Shadow Minister for Innovation & Science visits UMIP and UMIC
11 Jan 2011
The Shadow Minister for Innovation & Science (Business, Innovation and Skills Team) visited the University’s intellectual property commercialisation company (UMIP) and its business incubation company (UMIC) on Monday.
Chi Onwurah, MP for Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Central, discussed education, innovation and enterprise with the Deputy President and Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Rod Coombs and Clive Rowland, CEO of UMIP.
Ms Onwurah said: "Innovation is the engine of growth and progress. I was impressed by the work UMIP is doing to commercialise innovation and help us keep our place at the forefront of world science.
"Universities, small local businesses, global companies and financiers all need to be able to work together to cross fertilise ideas, enable innovation and growth. I hope UMIP can continue to work with all stakeholders in this way."
Ms Onwurah also enjoyed a guided tour of one of UMIC’s bioscience incubators, The Core Technology Facility, where she was introduced to John Nicholson, Chairman and CEO, and Professor Richard Walmsley, Chief Scientific Officer of University spin-out company, Gentronix Ltd, an innovative biotechnology company.
Ms Onwurah added: "An innovation which means we don’t need to use animal tissue in testing for carcinogens, and is so much cheaper than traditional tests, has to be a real step forward. I’m glad the University was able to support Gentronix in its early days. We need more early day support for innovative companies."