University joins UKRIC network to improve future infrastructure in the UK

The University of Edinburgh is to join a national research community working to improve infrastructure and cities in the UK and beyond, it was announced today.

The University joins the UK Collaboratorium for Research on Infrastructure and Cities (UKCRIC) along with Heriot-Watt University in a collaboration known jointly as the Edinburgh Research Partnership in Engineering. The UKCRIC includes a number of leading UK universities which, with the addition of the Edinburgh partnership, now total 15.

Together, the UKCRIC partners aim to provide integrated research to underpin the renewal, sustainment and improvement of infrastructure and cities in the UK and elsewhere for the "benefit of all citizens". 

Better policy decisions

UKCRIC aims to provide a strong research base to better inform policy and decisions on infrastructure spending, and the addition of the two Edinburgh-based universities will help align UKCRIC more closely with infrastructure decision-making in Scotland and increase opportunities to positively influence UK governments.

Membership of UKCRIC will also help the University of Edinburgh in its mission to deliver the Data-Driven Innovation component of the government-funded Edinburgh and South East City Region Deal. The Deal aims to accelerate productivity and inclusive growth through the funding of infrastructure, skills, innovation and housing across the region where 24% of Scotland’s population live.

UKCRIC will draw on the Edinburgh Research Partnership’s expertise in data-driven research, concentrated around the informatics community which consists of the recently opened Bayes Institute, the Alan Turing Institute, of which Edinburgh University is a founder member, and the construction of the National Robotarium at Heriot-Watt University.

Scotland’s infrastructure portal

The University’s involvement in the UKRIC is led by the Centre for Future Infrastructure within Edinburgh Futures Institute (EFI).

The School of Engineering's Chair for Future Infrastructure, Professor Gordon Masterton, commented: “Being welcomed into the UKCRIC group of universities is a testimony to the quality of multi-disciplinary research and data-driven innovation within the Edinburgh Research Partnership and it gives Scotland's infrastructure policy makers a portal to the premier cities and infrastructure research-base in the UK.”

William Powrie, Convenor of UKCRIC, added: “We are delighted to welcome both the University of Edinburgh and Heriot-Watt University to the UKCRIC family. We gain a wealth of knowledge and expertise through this collaboration, not only through these institutions but from Scottish research more widely, as this collaboration will act as an entry point for all Scottish universities to collaborate with UKCRIC.”

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