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Huawei Hosts the Academic Salon on Future Innovation

Policymakers, academics and industry leaders discuss future innovation and how to enhance industry-academia collaboration.

2018.06.21

Huawei hosted its second Academic Salon in central London 21 June, 2018. Top policymakers, academics and industry leaders gathered to discuss how UK universities should prepare for future innovation.

The UK Government Science Minister Sam Gyimah said: “Developing the relationship between businesses and our world leading researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs is at the heart of our modern Industrial Strategy. Huawei’s long-term commitment to open collaboration with UK academic institutions is a great example of how we can bring together academic minds and businesses to ensure not only the research but the development is done here in the UK, producing the products and technologies of tomorrow.”

 Sam Gyimah, the UK Government Science Minister  speaking at Huawei Academic Salon

Professor Stephen Toope, Vice Chancellor of the University of Cambridge, added, “No single organization has all the answers. Partnerships drive progress. That is why we established a new research group with Huawei and BT last year. By working with industry we seek to improve the technologies we use on a daily basis, and ensure that the insights delivered through our research have a wide impact. Universities are a natural place for innovation, but it is through collaboration with technology partners, like Huawei, that we can best prepare our institutions for the future.”

Professor Stephen Toope, Vice Chancellor of the University of Cambridge, in conversation with John Gill, Editor, Times Higher Education at Huawei Academic Salon

Chen Lifang, Board Director and Senior Vice President of Huawei, said, “Huawei holds a fundamental belief in the power of education and research. It is part of our worldwide commitment to R&D, our devotion to inspiring and supporting STEM careers. We see our partnerships with universities as an important part of this effort and we are especially proud of our long-term relationships with universities in the UK.”

Chen Lifang, Board Director of Huawei, Sam Gyimah, the UK Government Science Minister, and Professor Stephen Toope, Vice Chancellor of University of Cambridge (left to right) attended Academic Salon

The Huawei Academic Salon showcased the Huawei Innovation Research Program (HIRP), the company’s flagship funding initiative which provides backing for leading universities and institutes conducting research in communications technologies, computer science, engineering, and related fields. 

On 1st February, Madam Sun Yafang, former Chairwoman of Huawei, met with the UK Prime Minister Theresa May in Beijing, and reaffirmed the company’s long-term commitment to the UK. Huawei announced that the company will invest and procure a total of £3 billion in the UK over the next five years, helping UK companies to increase exports to China. This commitment builds on the pledge made by Huawei in 2012 to invest and procure £1.3 billion in the UK over the five years from 2013 to 2017. Huawei announced that this 2012 target was significantly exceeded, and Huawei invested and procured £2 billion over that period. The company now employs more than 1,500 people in the UK in 15 offices, including its head office in Green Park, Reading.

Huawei has a strong focus on Research & Development (R&D) and has three R&D sites in the UK: the Centre for Integrated Photonics in Ipswich; Neul in Cambridge; and a centre in Bristol. The company will continue to grow its investment in R&D and collaborate with UK universities over the next five years, with plans for an expanded range of topics to research and more university partnerships.