Winners of the Innovation and Impact Awards 2019 were announced on Thursday 31 January at a glittering ceremony held at the Sainsbury Centre. The Awards were presented by guests from a range of businesses and organisations that regularly collaborate with UEA, and the ceremony featured a keynote address from Doug Field, Chair of New Anglia LEP.

The Awards celebrate staff and students who have shown a strong commitment to innovation and impact, and recognised vital collaborations between UEA and organisations outside of higher education.

Finalists, UEA staff, guests, and external organisations, attended for networking drinks, a three-course meal, and presentation of the awards. The evening was a great success and a true celebration of the world-changing research and innovation activities taking place at UEA.


The winners are:

Award for Student or Graduate Innovation and Enterprise – Dr Oskar Wendowski (MED/PHA) and Dr Thuria Abduljhbar (MED) for e-Surgery

Presented by Rebecca Lewis Smith, Fountain Partnership

Consultancy Project of the Year – Prof Rachel Warren, Prof Corinne Le Quere, Asher Minns and colleagues (ENV/TYN) for ‘Impacts of Climate Change’. As Prof Warren was unable to attend the ceremony in person, the award was collected on her behalf by Dr Naomi Vaughan (ENV/TYN) and Dr Johanna Forster (DEV/TYN).

Presented by Steve Davidson, Marsh

SME Collaboration of the Year – Matthew Bennett (SCI) for ‘SmartCondensing’

Presented by Glen Webster, Barclays

Outstanding Social or Cultural Impact – Dr Eylem Atakav (AMA) for ‘Growing up Married’

Presented by Steve Miller, Norfolk Museums Service

Outstanding Impact in Policy and Practice – Dr Martin Scott (DEV) for ‘Supporting Humanitarian Journalism’

Presented by Fiona Ryder, TCD Media

Outstanding Commercialisation of Technology – Dr Sheng Qi (PHA) for ‘Technology Solutions for Treating Diseases’

Presented by Lisa Perkins, BT

Outstanding Impact in Health, Wellbeing and Welfare – Dr Karen Bunning (HSC) for ‘Childhood Disability in Rural Kenya’

Presented by Richard Snell, IBM

ESRC Impact Accelerator Account Award – Dr Andrew Mayes (CHE) for ‘Microplastic Detection’

Presented by Caroline Jarrold, Jarrold & Sons


Prof Fiona Lettice, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation, hosted the evening and said:

UEA truly is a hub of pioneering, ground-breaking research excellence and innovation, and these awards celebrate the fantastic work being undertaken by our staff and students alike. They also highlight the support of our external collaborators, without whom such successes would not be possible.”

Each finalist received a trophy to commemorate their achievement and each category winner will also receive funding towards a marketing venture for their project, to further their impact and reach.

For more information about the Innovation & Impact Awards 2020, please email



We would also like to thank the judges for their time and for their invaluable contribution to the Innovation and Impact Awards.

Judging panel for the Innovation and Impact Awards 2019:


Prof Fiona Lettice, Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research & Innovation (Chair)

Prof Laura Bowater, Academic Director for Innovation 

Dr Jon Carter, Head of Innovation, RIN 

Prof Konstantinos Chalvatzis, Associate Dean for Innovation, SSF 

Prof Claire Jowitt, Associate Dean for Research, HUM 

Prof Ted Turocy, Associate Dean Research, SSF 

Julia Warner, Head of Research, RIN 

Glen Webster, Barclays, Area Business Manager 




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Innovation and Impact Award Categories Innovation and Impact Award Categories

Outstanding Impact in Policy and Practice 

This prize recognises Impacts of research and innovation where the beneficiaries may include government, non-governmental organisations, charities and public sector organisation and society, either as a whole or groups of individuals in society. It could include changes in professional guidance or training, direct changes in policy (or the prevention of change), the way in which options and/or evidence are viewed or evaluated by policy makers or increased efficiency in services.


Outstanding Commercialisation of Technology

This prize will recognise the outstanding use and exploitation of technology. As well as recognising for-profit business and consultancy, this category also recognises social enterprises that can demonstrate community based innovations. Impacts could include direct contribution to an individual business, sector or group of enterprises, economic growth, and innovation or change in management practices/structures or through the growth and utilisation of new skills. Impact could be achieved through any of the following means:
- Research collaborations funded by industry or social enterprises
- Commercial licensing of intellectual property to industry
- Creation of a start-up company to exploit the intellectual property
(Please note: Any ‘commercial in confidence’ material in the application should be marked as such.) 


Outstanding Social or Cultural Impact

This award recognises the significant contribution of research and innovation to a specific group, wider society or cultural institution, promoting awareness and tolerance. This category could include media coverage associated with demonstrable changes in public perception or prompting debate, increased turnover for a cultural institution or sector in relation to a research-led event, or a change in creative or curatorial practice resulting from a research-led exercise or exhibition; or public engagement activity


Outstanding Impact in Health, Wellbeing and Welfare

This prize recognises Impacts of research or innovations where the beneficiaries are individuals and groups whose quality of life has been enhanced (or potential harm mitigated). This could include a change in practice or guidance that can be traced to real-world improvements in outcomes, reduction in costs or a change in behaviour at a local, national or international scale. Where possible, impact should be quantified in financial, survival or similar terms.


Award for Student or Graduate Innovation and Enterprise 

This prize recognises an outstanding student innovation or enterprise venture that originated at UEA. This prize will recognise both business and social enterprise. The applicant leading the project must be a current student or have graduated from UEA within the last three years

Consultancy Project of the Year

This award recognises an outstanding consultancy project that can clearly demonstrate a commercial, social, health or cultural impact beyond academia

SME Collaboration of the Year

This award recognises UEA staff who have made a collaboration/collaborations with an SME that has resulted in an outstanding commercial, social, health or cultural impact beyond academia.


In addition, the ESRC Impact Accelerator Account Award is selected by the judging panel from all entries to the impact and commercialisation categories.