Green Gown Awards 2020 - Keele University - Finalist

Tags: Green Gown Awards 2020 | benefitting society | Keele University

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SEND & KRISP: Supporting Staffordshire businesses for sustainability 

Keele is committed to supporting local businesses play their part in developing a sustainable future and benefitting local society, through the Smart Energy Network Demonstrator and Keele Research Innovation Support business engagement programmes. These programmes benefit society through helping businesses develop new opportunities arising from the sustainability challenges we face, with particular emphasis on the climate emergency. 

Over 700 SMEs have been supported, through different types of support: graduate researchers working with businesses for three years as part of a PhD programme; 3 month paid Masters projects; 50 hours paid student support - all supported by academic staff expertise; and 12 hour ‘assists’ supporting businesses with myriad sustainability developments. 

These programmes contribute significantly to SDG 8 & 9 (Decent Work and Economic Growth; Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure) in deprived areas of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, creating a Staffordshire hub to develop the low carbon economy, while realising significant environmental and social benefits for the local community. 

Top 3 learnings:

  1. The programmes have highlighted the huge role SME’s will play supporting the global transition towards a low carbon and sustainable circular economy. 
  2. Sharing academic research to inform business innovation can provide impactful opportunities for students to drive sustainable change. 
  3. Local businesses are key to societal benefits; and universities can help businesses realise them. 

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