Digital Futures Institute

By Bethan Lauder

The University of Bristol has secured £100M

The funding is for the developent of the Bristol Digital Futures Institute - a research facility that aims to transform the way new digital technologies are created, used and tested for the benefit of society.

The University will get a £29m grant from the Research England UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (RPIF) plus £16m of match funding through philanthropy and £55m from 27 partners, including BT, Dyson, BBC and Airbus.

Working through the Institute, engineers will join forces with social scientists and tech giants, local government and community partners to develop transformational technologies for the future.

University of Bristol vice-chancellor and president Hugh Brady said:
“So many of the research solutions to contemporary global challenges are now discovered through creative collisions at the interface of traditional academic disciplines.
“The new Bristol Digital Futures Institute will apply this multidisciplinary paradigm to exploration of our rapidly evolving digital world.
“We are creating a unique research ecosystem where world-class engineers, computer scientists, social and behavioural scientists, psychologists and legal scholars can work shoulder to shoulder with our partners from industry, social enterprises and civic organisations exploring the opportunities and challenges posed by new digital technologies.”

Dr Mark Bentall, chief operating officer for the corporate technology office at Airbus added:

"Airbus is delighted to be part of the University of Bristol’s Digital Futures Institute. At Airbus, we believe that it is co-creation and co-development that lead to breakthrough and digital transformation across design and manufacturing services. Ultimately, this partnership could accelerate novel technologies to market faster and more effectively than today."

The Institute will be based at University of Bristol’s new Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus. 


The University of Bristol has received £100m of funding for a new Bristol Digital Futures Institute. The funding is made up of a grant from Research England, alongside significant funding and support from partner organisations. The work of the Institute will be world leading. University of Bristol academics will work with businesses big and small to research exactly how technology will be developed, used and experienced in the future. New facilities at the University’s Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus (due to open in 2022) will test different cyber-attack scenarios on critical infrastructure; emulate future cites to test-drive the newest vehicles; or explore how different children would experience the classrooms of the future. This knowledge will be shared to help create a better digital world.

To find out more visit the University of Bristol website


Published: Thursday, 1 August 2019

Image: Nick Crew will present at ESA event in Cardiff on 13 February 2019