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Engineering Research Network Wales

Wales is a nation built on engineering prowess. It has a history of technical innovation that stretches from the very beginnings of industrial mechanisation, driven by iron and coal, through to today’s digital manufacturing revolution in which virtual product design and simulation is being integrated with automated fabrication and robotic assembly.


The Engineering Research Network Wales is founded on this strong tradition of engineering ingenuity. We are a pan-Wales initiative focused on Advanced Engineering and Materials and anchored by our core academic partners within the Engineering Colleges at Bangor, Cardiff and Swansea Universities and our industrial partner, TWI Ltd. Our aim is to promote research excellence and industrial engagement across a wide spectrum of engineering challenges. The Network was established in 2013 with funding from the Welsh Government and the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales and is one of three Sêr Cymru National Research Networks.

We fund a large portfolio of projects including PhD studentships, Research Fellowships and major research project awards and these address three thematic areas: sensors and devices, computational engineering and advanced materials. Our aim is to develop collaborative partnerships through which increased research funding, world class publications and a high profile, international presence for Engineering Wales can be realised.


The National Research Network in Advanced Engineering and Materials (AEM) is a transformative alliance that will enhance fundamental and applied research in Wales, seeking to address the challenges articulated in ‘Science for Wales’ and resulting in:

  • Increased critical mass of world class researchers through strategic collaboration
  • Greater grant capture from competitive sources
  • Improved engagement with research users
  • More effective knowledge transfer and outreach activities

The Network has £7M of funding from the Welsh Government and HEFCW as part of the Ser Cymru (Stars Wales) Initiative.

Between 2013 and 2018 the team, led by Swansea University, in collaboration with core partners Bangor University, Cardiff University and TWI Ltd will create new opportunities for advances in engineering and materials by:

  • Awarding 40 PhD studentships and establishing a Graduate School
  • Awarding 16 Post Doctoral Research Assistantships or Fellowships
  • Running a programme of seminars, training, conferences and STEM outreach activities
  • Working with industry on road mapping, collaborative research and knowledge transfer


The expected outcomes from this work are expected to be:

  • Enhanced collaboration amongst partners in fundamental research, leading to joint outputs
  • Improved engagement with research users, leading to new collaborations with industry, NHS and other agencies
  • Increased research income from RCUK, EU and industry
  • Raised profile of engineering research in Wales through a programme of outreach activities, conferences and workshops
  • Increased research capacity in key themes through the appointment of NRN Fellows and PhD student
  • We are a network of
  • 100 Researchers
  • 62 Research Projects
  • 15 Fellows
  • 42 PHD Students
  • 71 Industrial Partner Organisations