Health science centres announced for region

The creation of three academic health science centres (AHSC) in the West Midlands has been announced by West Midlands minister Liam Byrne, MP, during a visit to The University of Warwick’s Medical School.

The AHSC at Warwick will be the first in the Midlands and will bring together all the NHS trusts across Coventry and Warwickshire to draw on the university’s world-leading research expertise in systems biology, engineering and medicine.

Another two AHSCs are planned in the region.

For more details see The University of Warwick.  


Blogger’s view from South by Southwest

In a video blog from the South by Southwest new media festival in Austin, Texas, Birmingham’s only professional blogger Pete Ashton explains what he’s hoping to pick up from the world’s biggest digital media gathering.

South by Southwest brings together people from across every aspect of new media from around the world to share the latest technological developments.

 Pete Ashton says he has already picked ideas that will help businesses back in the West Midlands.

Pete Ashton video blog

The face of Facebook

The billionaire chief executive of networking site Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, talked about how his company is valued at more than just its $15bn price tag in making a keynote speech at one of the world’s biggest new media festivals, South by Southwest in Austin, Texas.

He is just one of a series of top names at the festival which brings together people from around the world from all spheres of new media to learn about the latest technologies and trends.

A group of six from the West Midlands is in Austin to hear about what is new in new media to bring it back to the region.

Public relations consultant Ruth Ward and Maverick Television’s new media producer Nick Lockey from Birmingham were there to hear what the head of Facebook had to say.

Facebook ehief executive Mark Zuckerberg

Finalists to plug energy gap

Two teams from the University of Birmingham have been selected for the final of the national npower energy challenge to produce a solution to the impending energy gap crisis.

In the final the two teams will have an eight-minute pitch to convince the board of directors of the power company that theirs is the most viable solution to bridge the gap between rising demand for energy and dwindling supply, with the exhaustion of UK oil and gas reserves and closure of nuclear plants.

The final takes place on March 17.

For more see the University of Birmingham.

Our man at the World Service

One of the biggest names in the media is due to give a talk at Coventry University as part of the Coventry Conversations series.

Nigel Chapman, head of the BBC’s World Service, will take the floor for the talk, which is free and open to the public, at 1pm on Thursday February 28 at the Ellen Terry Building, room ETG 34.

For more information see University of Coventry.

Business opportunities of a virtual world

A free seminar is to take place to show firms how to exploit the business opportunities of creating a virtual world.

The virtual world offers a three dimensional computer generated space where customers can visit an organisation and interact virtually with staff.

The free seminar is at aimed anyone interested in gaining an understanding of the virtual world and its benefits.

The seminar, organised by the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce, is on Monday February 25 from 6-8pm at the Technology Innovation Centre, Millenium Point, Birmingham.

For more information see Birmingham Science City ideasforlife.  

Using Digital Media in Marketing and Communications

A unique opportunity to attend two events on digital media.

If you are a West Midlands-based business keen to ensure that your organisation takes advantage of the digital media and communications, then join us on Wednesday 5th March at Lasan Restaurant (St Paul’s Square, Birmingham) for a networking event and the launch of our new online video channel

This networking launch will introduce you to a range of other businesses from the region and put you in touch with representatives from universities and other knowledge-based organisations across the West Midlands. If you are a small or medium sized business (SME) or sole trader, attendance at this networking launch will also give you the opportunity to gain a complimentary place at our one day Conference Using Digital Media in Marketing and Communications, to be held on Tuesday 18th March at Alton Towers in Staffordshire.

This Conference will provide practical advice on the use of the latest digital communications channels and techniques. New interactive online opportunities for all sectors – from mainstream television to mobiles – will be debated and displayed. Keynote speakers include one of the country’s leading experts on digital media, Anthony Lilley, Chief Creative Officer, Magic Lantern Productions; leading science journalist Dr Adam Rutherford, Editor Web Publishing for Nature and Dr Jon Salkeld, Managing Director Optronics Division, Qinetiq.

Want to access all this for free?

If you are a sole trader or an SME (with up to 250 employees) based in the West Midlands region, then you can attend the conference for free. All you need to do is attend the networking launch on 5th March and fill in a registration form. There are 60 free places specially reserved for the region’s SMEs thanks to the support of Advantage West Midlands.

In addition we are offering a discounted price for the conference of £195.00 per person for those who book before 1st March. Those booking after this date and will have to pay the full conference price of £395.00.

Networking and Launch Event: Wednesday 5 March (6pm onwards) at Lasan Restaurant, St. Paul’s Square, Birmingham.

Conference: Tuesday 18 March (9.30am – 3.30pm) at Alton Towers Conference Centre

For more information or to attend these events, please email