Conference News

A powerhouse of innovation

Posted 14th June 2010 by James Cotton

Over the past 30 years, the city of Cambridge has become a powerhouse of enterprise and innovation, the hub of the UK’s leading high-technology business cluster, writes George Cole in The Financial Times.  

According to a report by the Cambridge Technopole Group, there are 1,400 high-technology companies employing 43,000 people within a 25-mile radius of Cambridge, compared to a mere 20 high-technology firms in the region back in 1978. In light of this rapid growth, the Cambridge area has since been dubbed the “Silicon Fen”, the Silicon Valley of the UK.

Companies such as CSR, which designs and manufactures single-chip radio devices for the Bluetooth standard, and whose wireless technology is found in millions of mobile phones and computers and ARM Holdings, the world’s largest semi-conductor intellectual property supplier, are just two among the cluster of outstanding companies originated in Cambridge.

The strength of this cluster is growing exponentially as new waves of start-ups continue to pop up in the region’s science parks and incubation centres. Bango, a mobile Internet company specialising in mobile billing and independent real time analytics, and Plastic Logic, a developer of e-Reader technology, are clear examples of future tech innovations that are being developed in Cambridge.

Such is the cluster’s strength as a ‘jobs generation machine’ that, according to David Connell, Senior Research Associate at the University’s Centre for Business Research, over the last 30 years, more jobs in the physical sciences – IT, engineering, physics and materials - have been generated through Cambridge’s technology consultancies than through the University.

The Cambridge Phenomenon Conference, which is taking place on 5th October 2010, offers attendees the chance to celebrate 50 years worth of this success. Delegates will be presented with endless opportunities to get the inside track on trends in IT and Biosciences, to explore ventures only made possible by the cluster convergence and to be part of the future of high-technology in the Silicon Fen.

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