Green your business at the University of East London
The University's Sustainability Research Institute (SRI) and Business Centre joined forces on Tuesday 8 June 2021 to host a virtual event to showcase the support available at the University to help businesses become more sustainable and develop green innovations.
The event kicked off with Professor Darryl Newport and Dr Mike Medas introducing the work of the SRI, including the ERDF-funded ARENA project which provides businesses with free support to develop and commercialise their innovative ideas, products and services in the areas of resource efficiency, urban green infrastructure, and nature-based solutions for urban resilience.
Guests then heard some first-hand accounts from businesses that are already collaborating with the University. Dharmesh Joshi and Manorma Joisi from AARDRA Systems talked about how the ARENA project is helping them develop smart controllers for major irrigation systems used in agriculture, horticulture and on sports fields. Manorma also explained how University of East London students will be involved in the project at all stages and help with the production of analytic data.
Tom Brennan, Director of St John's Laboratory, who have been based at the Business Centre for six years, spoke about their journey towards a greener culture in e-commerce by taking a more resource-efficient approach to their packaging. Tom was joined by UEL graduate Momchil Papov who explained how his internship with St John's Laboratory during his degree enabled him to 'learn twice' and apply the skills he was developing to a real life business.
The University has a long history of supporting entrepreneurs in East London through its Enterprise programmes and Business Centre. Manager Duncan Boak talked about the transition he is leading of the Business Centre to a new Sustainable Enterprise Centre on the Docklands campus which will support the launch and growth of green, tech, socially impactful organisation that create good jobs for the people of Newham.
The final presentation came from Matt Davies, Head of Economic Development for the Royal Docks Enterprise Zone, who briefed guests on the wider initiatives taking place in the area, including the development of a Green Tech Quarter in London's Royal Docks and the ambition to make it a Living Wage Place.
The event ended with a question and answer session, which demonstrated the interest in this topic amongst the East London business community and the need for more services and support. As one guest put it: "The event was excellent. I hope it's only the beginning of what's to come in the future." The UEL team are already planning how to keep the momentum going. Watch this space.
See the presentation.