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INT7 - Supporting world class universities and research institutions

INT7 - Supporting world class universities and research institutions


The Plan supports the continued growth of its higher education and research institutions to raise their profile internationally.

Image Graduation
Image Plymouth University
Image Art College
Image Levinsky Building
Image Wave Tank
Photo by Brett Jordan


The city will support the continued growth of its higher education and research institutions to raise their profile internationally by:

  1. Recognising the competitive strengths of the city's higher education and research institutions and supporting their development and marketing on an international stage.
  2. Providing the physical space, networks and facilities to capture the commercialisation of Plymouth's strong knowledge base into new higher value, exporting businesses.


The city has a significant pool of knowledge and innovative potential with an extensive network of colleges and research facilities as well as three universities; Plymouth University, Plymouth College of Art and Plymouth Marjon University.

The city's considerable strengths in marine science and technology include research institutions such as Plymouth Marine Laboratories, Marine Biological Association, Sir Alister Hardy Foundation for Ocean Science and South West Marine Energy Park, backed by a number of leading companies in the marine technology sector (including Babcock in Plymouth and Appledore, Princess Yachts and M-Subs) in various locations in Plymouth and the South Hams. Plymouth will continue to play a leading role in the creation and development of the UK South Coast Marine Cluster.

Plymouth's marine research institutes present a unique research and development opportunity with the combination of expertise in marine science, education, and technology. Together these organisations put Plymouth in a unique position within the UK and internationally to derive scientific, academic, and economic benefits for the local community, the region and the UK. Plymouth therefore provides opportunities for governments, agencies and industry through technology transfer, joint ventures, collaborative research, international partnerships and multi-disciplinary conservation efforts. Embedded within the science base is also a unique capability for the dissemination of knowledge and public understanding of science. Plymouth has showcased its globally significant marine capabilities through Marine Tech Expo 2016 and will continue building momentum and traction up to a major inward investment and business engagement event during Mayflower 400.

Plymouth University's Marine Innovation Centre (MARIC) operates across the south west, with offices in Plymouth, the Brixham Blue Environmental Hub and an outreach office at the Bristol & Bath Science Park. This Business Technology Centre operates across the region making intelligent connections between small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and academia, to help increase the competitiveness of the south west marine sector businesses. The Centre provides an intelligent brokerage service to support SMEs access the knowledge, expertise and world class facilities that sit in the marine institutions, universities and public sector research establishments. The University Technical College also supports the city in becoming a world leader in marine technology as a centre of educational excellence for marine engineering and advanced manufacturing.

Plymouth's rapidly developing medical and health care sector includes a mix of activity from teaching to medical-engineering, medical informatics and biomedical science. Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust is the largest hospital trust in the south west peninsula and is a teaching trust that forms part of the Plymouth University Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry and conducts a wide research programme.

The city is developing a growing knowledge-based manufacturing and service industry by linking to the work of Plymouth University, the hospital and the advanced engineering sector. Plymouth Science Park hosts some of the most innovative businesses in the south west which include medical, science, technology and knowledge based companies. The Plymouth International Medical and Technology Park has supported Derriford to become a centre of excellence for knowledge based industries.

Plymouth is also increasingly recognised as having a diverse and vibrant creative industries sector which includes creative and digital media, audio-visual, design, TV and film production and visual arts, music technology and software games development. Plymouth College of Art is a specialist provider of education in art, craft, design and media which aspires to develop its distinctive profile of work nationally and internationally. The College runs a busy national and international programme of visiting artists, exhibitions, public events and partnership activities. Plymouth University Peninsula Arts also hosts the largest contemporary art space in Plymouth with year round exhibitions from local and international artists.

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