Community 26.01.17

‘Visionary’ OLP recognised in region’s emerging healthcare and medical tech sectors

Writing for the Yorkshire Post, Keith Jackson, CEO of JRI Orthopaedics and a member of the SCR Local Enterprise Business Growth Board, praised the ‘visionary’ OLP and the AWRC as an example of research excellence and collaboration in the SCR.
Keith said: “With an aging UK population and a greater focus on preventative medicine, the healthcare and medical technology sectors are emerging as growth areas in the SCR.
“In this region, our particular strength is in medical technologies and their use of specialist metals, precision engineering, and advanced manufacturing. We also have, vitally, the intellectual infrastructure to kick-start innovations and the driving curiosity to research and prototype the ideas that come from both medical practitioners and their patients.
“It was and is a region with a heritage of high level skills, a strong and co-operative research community which draws in talent, and an excellent supply chain.”
The aim of the AWRC is to create ‘innovations that help people move’, tackling the key issues of static levels of physical activity and rising obesity, while also attracting new jobs and investment to the region.
Delivered by Sheffield Hallam University in partnership with Legacy Park Ltd, the AWRC will form the centrepiece of the OLP and is set to become the most advanced research and development centre for physical activity in the world.
The multi-million pound project will provide state-of-the-art, fully instrumented laboratories and a team of 50 researchers for collaborative projects. Products and services will be taken from concept to market, mirroring the successful model used in the engineering and manufacturing sectors.
Through the AWRC’s close links with the National Centre of Sports and Exercise Medicine, researchers will have the unique opportunity to work with the population of Sheffield and use local communities to explore and test the potential of innovations and products developed at the OLP.
Keith continued: “The AWRC is based on the region’s visionary Olympic Legacy Park in Sheffield which is set to be part of an internationally recognised Innovation District for health and wellbeing research and learning.
“Around 3,000 people will work, learn and improve their fitness at the 35-acre park with world-class sports, education, health and leisure facilities. This public-private sector joint venture will provide businesses with a unique chance to gather research from a diverse range of groups including Olympic and Paralympic athletes, professional sportsmen and women, amateur competitors, community sport programmes and schoolchildren.”
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