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New report uncovers top 100 university research projects

The wealth of life-changing research currently taking place in universities across the UK has been revealed in a new report.

Big Ideas for the Future, a report jointly published by Universities UK and Research Councils UK (RCUK), looks at 100 groundbreaking pieces of research from all fields, including science, social sciences, engineering, and the arts and the humanities.

Engineering and technology highlights from the report have included University of Plymouth research into a new type of robot which will be capable of becoming ‘friends' with humans and the development of luminescent solar concentrators to maximise efficiency of photovoltaic cells at the University of Edinburgh. Research into the development of an invisibility cloak at the University of Birmingham was also highlighted, as was a new ‘excergaming’ system developed at Teesside University, where middle-aged men compete against a virtual boxing opponent in order to lose weight and improve fitness.

“Research has an impact on all our lives. Whether it is a breakthrough in experimental science, or an invention that makes new things possible, or a project that leads us to understand better the strengths and weaknesses of our society, research is the key to the UK’s growth, prosperity and wellbeing. Big Ideas for the Future showcases just some of the excellent research being carried out in UK universities that achieves these aims. It is vital we continue to support the talented individuals whose work makes a real difference,” says Professor Rick Rylance, chair elect of RCUK.

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