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UK and Germany announce new science collaboration at Imperial | Imperial News | Imperial College London



German and UK Science Secretaries met at the White City Deep Tech Campus yesterday to sign a new partnership agreement that will deepen science links.

Germany’s Minister of Education and Research, Bettina Stark-Watzinger, and Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, Michelle Donelan MP, visited Imperial’s White City Deep Tech Campus to announce a new agreement to boost science and research ties between the UK and Germany. The Joint Declaration of Intent commits both countries to broadening and deepening their science and research links.

The event also brought together leading scientists from both countries’ research communities to share and agree promising opportunities for R&D teamwork ranging from quantum and AI, to clean technology and research security. The UK and German governments will now establish a Strategic Working Group to ensure that these high ambitions are matched with concrete plans on delivery.

Hugh Brady Hosting the event, Imperial’s President Professor Hugh Brady said:

“Germany is a key partner for Imperial. It is fantastic to host Ministers and science and innovation leaders from both nations at Imperial today to shape our future collaborations in crucial areas such as AI, Quantum, Fusion, Batteries.” 

UK Secretary of State for Science and Technology Michelle Donelan MP said:

“Germany is the UK’s second-largest trading partner, as well as a critical science and research partner through the likes of Horizon Europe and CERN. To capitalise on this, bringing our shared strengths in science and technology together will be essential.”

German Federal Minister of Education and Research Bettina Stark-Watzinger said:

“Today’s exchange of views together with the science communities in Germany and the UK is only the beginning. Our Joint Declaration of Intent provides the basis for good and close cooperation to strengthen science and research.”

Closing the event, Professor Mary Ryan, Vice-Provost (Research and Enterprise) led a tour of the White City campus, explaining how the partnership between Imperial and the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham (LBHF) is supporting some of the world’s most innovative organisations, spanning life sciences, deep tech, media and the creative arts. This included a visit to MedTechOne, where Professor Anthony Bull discussed Imperial’s support for excellence in research and translation of medical technologies.

Imperial and Germany

German visit Germany is one of Imperial’s closest research partners. Academics from Imperial publish around 2,000 research papers with partners in Germany every year. Imperial also has a thriving and dynamic German community including more than 360 students and more than 3,500 alumni.

Imperial’s key European partnerships include the flagship strategic partnership with Germany’s Technical University of Munich (TUM). Scientists from Imperial and TUM work together in a number of research areas such as AI, health, sustainability and climate. The two world-leading universities have several joint initiatives and have seeded over 60 projects.

Imperial is also a strategic partner of BASF, the world’s largest chemical producer. The collaboration generates know-how and intellectual property to enable the chemical industries to improve their performance, sustainability, and resilience. This includes a partnership on Innovative Continuous Manufacturing of Industrial Chemicals (IConIC) which pools expertise to advance flow chemistry, a production technique in which the required reactions take place in continuous operation rather than in batches.

The Department of Materials at Imperial is working in collaboration with Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung to develop a world-first microscopy suite aimed at unravelling questions about the atomic scale nature of materials. The Imperial Centre for Cryo Microscopy of Materials pioneers advanced material analysis techniques, facilitating breakthroughs in understanding and optimising materials crucial for the energy transition, including in hydrogen, batteries, and other energy systems.

Horizon Europe at Imperial

The new UK-German declaration builds on opportunities for UK researchers to collaborate with colleagues in Germany and beyond through Horizon Europe: the world’s largest programme of research collaboration. The UK is now fully associated to Horizon Europe and Imperial research can participate in and lead projects across the programme. 

Imperial and German partners are also involved in 47 collaborative Horizon Europe projects. For example, a team from Imperial and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin are using artificial intelligence to determine the individual impact of dietary habits on the microbiome, the metabolome, and the immune system.

To find out more about opportunities in Horizon Europe, please get in touch with the Research Office and the Enterprise Research Impact Management Office.

Fusion Roundtable with UK and Germany researchers and delegates

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