Researchers in Residence awards launches at Energy Systems Catapult

Published: 5 April 2018

Energy Systems Catapult (ESC) is taking part in a new Researchers in Residence (RiR) pilot initiative that aims to improve knowledge sharing between research universities and the Catapult Network by offering opportunities to deliver applied research projects.

Launched by Research Councils UK (RCUK), the RiR initiative will make up to 52 awards available to nine Catapults and is being funded to a total of £2.6 million.

ESC has already awarded a research residency for the first tranche of funding; Dr Becky Mallaband has recently joined us from Aston University and will be looking at the consumer challenges of decarbonising heat, which forms part of our Smart Systems and Heat programme.

The initiative will support the development of new collaborations which may include research visits or longer-term residencies for academics who will be able to spend time at Catapult offices and sites.

The aims of the RiR initiative are to:

  • Accelerate the impact of Research Council-funded research
  • Increase knowledge exchange and co-creation between academia and Catapult centres
  • Develop new collaborations between academia and Catapult centres
  • Expand the capabilities and knowledge of the Catapults
  • Nurturing talents and skills development of researchers and Catapult staff
  • Create a cohort of RiRs, able to share their experiences with a wider network of academics.

Next steps

As the second tranche of funding is released, we are now reviewing applications for an energy researcher to undertake a residency to look at Realising the benefits of Systems Engineering, market incentives and disruptive technologies.
We will be working with RiR candidates to establish a programme of work that articulates the role that System Engineering could play in the development of a future energy system. This will draw on learning from other disciplines and energy jurisdictions, as well as identifying gaps in how transport, heat and power systems are evolving.

The project will explore:

  • How can the benefits of (System of) Systems Engineering, exploitation of market forces and disruptive technologies be harnessed, while minimising any perceived or real conflicts?
  • What are the learnings from other domains, countries and latest thinking on how these conflicting drivers are managed effectively?
  • What interfaces and requirements can be defined between systems?
  • How can policy, regulation, market frameworks, innovation, systems architecture and design be combined to deliver effective change?

Further opportunities for funding/residencies will continue to be available through 2018 as detailed here.