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Emma Flynn

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise, Queen’s University Belfast

We believe that research shapes worlds for now and for the future. Our academics are tackling the global challenges of our age, changing people’s lives for the better.

Research holds the key to making a difference to people’s lives now and in the future. Our research examines the breadth of our behaviour, from something as seemingly innocuous as the impact of letting your goldfish go free in your local river to significant impacts such as improving the detection and treatment of cancer. 

Research holds the key to making a difference to people’s lives now and in the future.

Queen’s is privileged to have a long history of working in partnership and securing investment that enables our academics to co-develop, evaluate and test theories that create solutions to complex problems which our local and global society faces. 

Such partnerships and endeavour have resulted in 88% of our research being recognised by the Research Excellence Framework (REF) exercise as world leading and internationally excellent. Critically, 99% of our research environmental, our culture, policies, processes, strategy and vision were rated as world leading and internationally excellent. This demonstrates our commitment to fostering a creative, collaborative and inclusive culture which attracts, develops, and nurtures outstanding research talent and inspires our students. 

The heart of communities 

A critical part of our vision is to be at the heart of our communities, working with and giving back. We have a unique position in influencing all sectors of society, for example:

  • Partnering with communities and institutions to co-produce research which allows the sharing of untold experiences of war, enhancing inclusive cross-community understanding of contested heritage. 
  • Playing a key role in the international cybersecurity ecosystem through world leading research and local high quality job creation. 
  • Providing the basis for a model of collaboration between schools in Northern Ireland focused on promoting reconciliation and school improvement. 

We also have a vital role at the cutting edge of innovation. We believe that innovation keeps a society moving forward and it is part of our fabric at Queen’s. We are accelerating inclusive growth through our leadership in the once-in-a lifetime opportunities presented by the Belfast Region City Deal, driving forward major innovation projects that will include advanced manufacturing and clinical healthcare. 

The power of economic impact 

While we value positive environmental and societal innovation, we also know the power of economic impact. Our commercialisation of academic research has enabled spin out companies that to date have generated £396 million in revenue and provided 3,800 jobs.

Great research, partnerships and a commitment from educators to embrace new approaches, will continue to pave the way to a brighter future for all. 

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