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Partnership In Running For Prestigious Award

20 May 2010

The work of an innovative partnership between the University of Ulster and healthcare firm James Leckey Design Ltd has made the shortlist for another top UK award.

The business outcomes achieved through the Knowledge Transfer Partnership in seating and positioning for children with disabilities, have been acknowledged by a panel of business experts and the project is in the running to pick up an accolade at the Impact Awards on 16 June.

Nominated for best Business Impact Achieved Award, the team has fought off stiff competition from over 80 entries to be shortlisted and has high hopes for success.

The awards, which are organised by PraxisUnico, will reach its climax at a gala dinner on 16 June in Nottingham.

Dr Alison Porter-Armstrong, Senior Lecturer in Rehabilitation Sciences, said: “We are delighted to have been shortlisted for the Impact Award which has recognised the business growth outputs of the collaboration between the University and James Leckey. Even to be chosen alongside the three other nominees in the final is a testament to the diligent and sustained work of the team and highlights how existing clinical and research expertise in the School of Health Sciences at the University can make a valuable contribution to local economy growth and business development.”

Jackie Casey, Lecturer in Occupational Therapy and academic partner on the project, said: “We are proud to be able to build upon the success we have achieved through this partnership and look forward to continuing to work with both James Leckey Design Ltd and other local companies to improve overall business performance in the healthcare market."

In the running for the award alongside the University of Ulster team, is the University of Manchester Intellectual Property Ltd (UMIP) for the manufacturer of quantum dots in commercial quantities, ApaTech orthobiologics company from Queen Mary Innovation Ltd, Queen Mary University of London, and ChIEFS from food processor Faraday.

Ulster’s partnership, which had already made history by being the first ever partnership award to be made to an Occupational Therapist in the UK, blended Ulster’s occupational therapy skills with the firm’s expertise in designing mobility aids for children with disabilities.

The joint venture also had success in March this year, as the link-up between the School of Life and Health Sciences and James Leckey Design won the top prize of the Best Knowledge Transfer Partnership in the UK award.