The University of Manchester is leading a consortium behind a new multimillion pound research institute, designed to bring business, academia and government together to use data science and digital techniques to discover innovative health and care solutions.
The centre will be called The Christabel Pankhurst Institute for Health Technology, and celebrates the connection between the University and Dame Christabel Pankhurst, a driving force behind one of the most significant social reforms of the 20th century.
As well as honouring a distinguished alumna, the name is also designed to demonstrates the University’s commitment to redress the under-representation of women and other groups in science and academic leadership though its equality, diversity and inclusion action plan.
The institute is being backed in part by a £5 million award from the Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s Local Growth Fund and is part of an ambitious plan to boost the region’s provision in this area.
The consortium is made up of the University, Manchester Science Partnerships, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust, and Health Innovation Manchester.
The initiative will build on investments from the consortium as well as the Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council and The Alan Turing Institute, creating a total budget of more than £25 million.
The aim of the collaboration is to capitalise on the University’s strengths in digital health and develop innovative products and services for the healthcare sector. In turn, it is hoped that this will drive business growth and employment as well as boost the long-term health benefits of the region.
The institute will play a critical role in pulling innovations through from basic research to market ready products and services, which can then be accelerated into clinical use through Greater Manchester’s devolved health and care system and established innovation pathway.
President and vice-chancellor Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell said: "This is a really exciting opportunity to work with our partners to exploit the university’s strengths in digital health and advanced materials to make a real difference to the health and economic development of Greater Manchester."
The Minister of State for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth, Jake Berry, said: “We are committed to boosting economic growth across the Northern Powerhouse while ensuring that every community has the support and investment it needs to flourish.
“As a key part of the Greater Manchester Local Industrial Strategy, the Christabel Pankhurst Institute is testament to the strengths of partnership working while cementing the Northern Powerhouse’s reputation for being at the global forefront of health, science and innovation."