Sean Fielding appointed as Chair of influential university-business collaboration organisation, PraxisAuril

Originally published on the University of Exeter website

PraxisAuril is the national association which supports universities and businesses to work in partnership, sharing research and developing discoveries for the benefit of society and the economy.

The organisation represents over 5000 people in universities, public research bodies and industry and provides training and best practice in the sector.

Sean says: “There is plenty of evidence to show that university-business collaboration in the UK is working well, with the total annual value of collaboration standing at over £4billion. The World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report puts the UK consistently in the top 10 out of 160 countries for university-industry research collaborations and the OECD ranks the UK top for collaboration with small businesses. The question now is whether the UK can translate its world-leading prowess in research into economic growth and to meet the target of 2.4% of GDP spent on research.”

Sean says we need to grow a wide range of university business collaboration, not just research commercialisation: “…Businesses and universities benefit from collaboration via Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, training collaborations, consultancy projects, shared access to high tech facilities, exchange of staff and students, and by developing  specialist sector innovation hubs, science parks and business schools in the regions.”

As the new Chair of PraxisAuril, Sean is keen to support colleagues across the higher education sector and says: “We all recognise there is much more we can do and PraxisAuril will play a key role in helping knowledge exchange professionals in the UK to become the best in the World.”

Professor Mark Goodwin, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and the lead for External Engagement at the University of Exeter says: “Many congratulations to Sean on this important national appointment. This is also great for the University of Exeter, as it will help our commitment to collaborate with business and extend our positive impact on our economy and society.”

At Exeter University Sean Fielding leads a team that connects external organisations to the University, creates new business opportunities and generates new innovation. Each year they work on about 1500 projects worth around £50 million. The team is responsible for strategic alliances, contract education programmes with business, spin-outs, licensing and economic development. The team leads major innovation initiatives such as the University’s Innovation Centre and the Exeter Science Park of which Sean is a Board member.

Originally published on the University of Exeter website