The EPSRC has funded seven IKCs since 2007
The EPSRC has funded seven IKCs since 2007

In 2008 the Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technology (ECIT) was chosen by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to host The Centre for Secure Information Technologies (CSIT), one of only seven UK Innovation and Knowledge Centres (IKCs).

IKCs are a key component of the UK's approach to the commercialisation of emerging technologies through creating early stage critical mass in an area of disruptive technology. They are able to achieve this through their international quality research capability and access to companion technologies needed to commercialise research.

Based in a university they are led by an expert entrepreneurial team. While continuing to advance the research agenda, they create impact by enhancing wealth generation of the businesses with which they work.

The functions fulfilled by an IKC should include:

  • Bring those at the cutting edge of research together with innovators in business
  • Work together to develop their ideas: to energise thecommercialisation of new products and processes, and to inform the research base
  • Accelerate and promote business exploitation of an emerging research and technology field in a strategically important area
  • Nucleating point for the emergence of a new industry
  • Creates early stage critical mass, allowing businesses from different sectors to develop and exploit the technology
  • Provides access for companies to scientific, technology, application & market expertise & associated laboratory & scale up facilities
  • Speeds up full scale industrial adoption of emerging technologies
  • Help UK business to benefit from the excellent research work being carried out