Winning category: STEM Research Project of the Year

Brief description of business: The University of South Wales (USW) is a prominent institution located in Wales, formed in 2013 by merging the University of Glamorgan and the University of Wales, Newport. With campuses in Cardiff, Pontypridd, and Newport, USW offers a diverse range of undergraduate and postgraduate programs spanning various disciplines, including arts and humanities, business, engineering, health sciences, law, social sciences, and technology. The university prioritizes delivering an outstanding learning experience, boasting modern facilities such as well-equipped laboratories, libraries, computer centres, and specialized learning spaces.


Why they deserved to win their category:

In order to combat the deteriorating air quality in residential and school areas caused by increased traffic, USW has established a partnership with the Welsh Government and local councils to create an affordable air quality monitoring device that could be deployed in locations like busy roads, railways and schools. This device provides precise data to support intelligent decision-making, in line with the Clean Air Plan for Wales and the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Following being shortlisted for the prestigious IET Impact in Society Awards 2023. USW are looking to expand the use of our air quality monitoring solutions within other local authorities with a goal to develop a prototype consisting of modular systems for landslides, air quality and water quality. In addition, the team are working closely with its partners to utilize sensors and gain a deeper understanding of greenhouse gas emissions during various seasons. Its ultimate vision is to deploy the framework on a global scale to address environmental concerns, facilitate sustainable decision-making, and harness cutting-edge technology.

How does the individual, business, or organisation further the STEM sector in Wales?

USW offers an extensive range of STEM-focused undergraduate and postgraduate programs, providing students with a strong foundation in disciplines such as engineering, computer science, mathematics, physics, and applied sciences; all designed to meet the demand for skilled professionals in the STEM field and equip students with industry-relevant expertise.

USW actively collaborates with industry partners to ensure that its STEM programs align with industry needs. Through joint research projects, internships, work placements, and guest lectures by industry experts, students gain practical experience and develop valuable skills that make them highly desirable to employers.

The university also fosters entrepreneurial culture, supporting students and researchers in launching their own STEM ventures. Through initiatives like the USW Exchange, USW provides resources, mentorship, and access to funding opportunities, promoting entrepreneurship and knowledge exchange between academia and industry.

USW offers continuing professional development (CPD) courses and training programs for professionals in the STEM sector. These programs help individuals update their skills, stay current with technological advancements, and enhance their career prospects, contributing to the continuous development of the STEM workforce in Wales. USW actively engages with schools, colleges, and the community to promote STEM education and awareness. Through STEM-focused events, workshops, and activities, the university inspires young students and encourages their interest in STEM subjects, creating a pipeline of future STEM professional.