The partnership is based on Siemens’ MindSphere Innovation Network, developed to connect a university’s estate and research assets into its IoT platform, MindSphere. It then makes this data available to improve teaching and research collaborations between academics and industry partners, to uncover new business models and create commercial opportunities through digitalisation.
In addition to linking its estate and research assets into MindSphere and acting as a living lab to help equip graduates with the skills they will need in an increasingly digitalised industry, the University of Sheffield and Siemens have also invested in a bespoke space for collaboration and learning between students, local businesses and other partners called the ‘MindSphere Lounge’.
Juergen Maier, CEO, Siemens UK, who has led the Government’s Industrial Digitalisation Review, said: “Using digital technologies to transform business operations is key for the UK to drive competitiveness, improve national productivity and take advantage of the commercial opportunities offered by an increasingly digitalised industry.”
Teams from Siemens will be based on campus to help projects and engage communities by enabling Sheffield and other universities to become hubs for collaborating with local businesses.
“We believe this innovative network heralds a new eco-system enabled by MindSphere, which will provide a vital new model for collaboration between institutions, departments and other key stakeholders to universities,” Maier added.
Professor Sir Keith Burnett, president and vice-chancellor at the University of Sheffield, said: “This collaboration is not only a UK-first, but a vital step in demonstrating how universities and companies connect students and business with the local and global bid to drive productivity and build the skills of the future.”