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Birmingham City University and Aston University launch IDEA Birmingham to highlight innovation in the city

IDEA Birmingham launch

On the 8th December 2011 Dr Phil Extance, Pro Vice Chancellor for Business Partnerships & Knowledge Transfer at Aston University hosted the Idea Birmingham founders dinner.

Idea Birmingham is a University-business collaboration project, spearheaded by Birmingham City University with support from Aston, Staffordshire and West Midlands Universities, promoting design-driven innovation, knowledge transfer and the recognition and retention of vital emerging talent necessary for innovation, renewal, job and wealth creation in the Midlands.

The aim of the project is to create a platform to celebrate and showcase excellence in design and innovation and to inspire and build a new wave of Midlands IDEA leaders and entrepreneurs that will strengthen and significantly expand the regions portfolio of world leading brands by 2020.

The group’s first major event will be the IDEA Birmingham Expo and Awards which will be held from 7-10th June 2012 in the Mailbox, Birmingham.

Present at the dinner were representatives from Birmingham City University, Aston University, Staffordshire University, Birmingham City Council , Morgan Motor Company, Arup, AGA Rangemaster and KPM-Marine amongst others.

The keynote speech was given by Ian Callum, Design Director at Jaguar and founding Chairman of Idea Birmingham. Speaking of the aims of Idea Birmingham Ian Callum said, ‘It is my firm belief that design and manufacture could be the answer to our economic problems given the intellectual and creative capacity represented in that. These days people do not simply buy what they need, they buy what they like.’

Alongside the dinner the event also included a display of student design work including the Aston University Shell Eco car. The students involved in the project were pleased to spend some time discussing the innovative car with Ian Callum.  Innovative sports cars from industry were also on display, including vehicles designed by Jaguar and Morgan Motor Company.

To find out more about Idea Birmingham or to get involved please visit the website  or contact Natalie Slayman-Broom on  07974 952 883 or send an email.

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