Lancaster University: Strategic agreement with BAE Systems drives further business innovation and sustainable technology research in Lancashire

Lancaster University has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with BAE Systems enabling further shared research into sustainable technologies and deepening engagement with regional business to enhance business growth and opportunity.

As two anchor institutions, essential to the economic stability of the region, Lancaster University and BAE Systems will work together with partners including the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Lancashire County Council to develop the skills, capabilities and connections that will enhance prosperity in the region.

Focussing on skills development and technology research and development, the MoU supports both parties’ wider ambitions around Net Zero and enhancing expertise in cyber security.

Lancaster University, a top 15 university in the three major UK league tables, has research expertise in both cyber and sustainability. The University declared a climate emergency in 2020 and announced its aim to become net zero for carbon emissions from electricity and heating by 2030 and net zero from all other emissions by 2035.

BAE Systems employs almost 10,000 people in the Lancashire region alone. Working in collaboration with Lancaster University forms part of a wider strategy to work with leading academic organisations to develop innovative and sustainable technologies which will help to support customers today and tomorrow. Further research and development into sustainable technologies supports the Company’s Net Zero ambitions by helping to reduce the impact of its products and services on the environment.

The MoU formalises an existing relationship between the two parties which is focused on research, enterprise, engagement and skills-based collaborations to create regional prosperity.

It also builds on existing work with Lancaster University Management School which has seen BAE Systems employees completing training courses with the University, fostering a new generation of entrepreneurs, business leaders and innovators.

Commenting on the signing of the MoU Lancaster University Vice Chancellor Professor Andy Schofield said: “As a Civic University and anchor institution we – along with BAE Systems – are keen to ensure the future economic security of the region.

“In addition to our focus on the North West, some of the outputs we have achieved together through working in partnership have achieved national impact – for example our work on regional Science and Innovation Audits, the Innovation in Manufacturing and Engineering programme, Made Smarter Northwest and Productivity through People.

“By formalising this partnership with a Memorandum of Understanding we are recognising our previous successes and signalling the current and future significant potential to collaborate to drive prosperity and opportunity for Lancashire and the broader North West.”

Dave Holmes, Advanced Projects, Technology & Manufacturing Director at BAE Systems, said: “We’re delighted to be deepening our collaboration with Lancaster University in ways that will drive innovation and skills within the region. As a business, we are committed to building a sustainable future through genuine transformation – working with a wide supply chain of talent to help us drive agility and develop innovative and sustainable technologies. This agreement is a major step in that mission and will help us jointly deliver greater prosperity benefits and support the wider ambitions of the North West.”