Arise Innovation Hub Harlow
Harlow has a rich history of science and technology, and Anglia Ruskin University's Arise Innovation Hub is helping develop its next generation of cutting-edge businesses.
Based at Harlow Innovation Park, which forms part of a government-backed Enterprise Zone and is home to businesses including chipmaker Renesas and water technology specialist Xylem, the Arise Innovation Hub offers flexible space for businesses to start-up, scale-up and invest.
“Harlow is a town with innovation at its heart,” says Dr Beverley Vaughan, ARU’s Innovation Hubs Director. “Now it’s being reinvigorated, and this provides a fantastic opportunity for ARU to be part of the growth of a new business cluster.”
The Harlow Arise Innovation Hub is situated midway between the science and tech clusters in Cambridge and North London, and close to the Stevenage Biomedical Catalyst, Cell and Gene Therapy hub in Braintree and Stansted Airport. But the Hub offers much more than just a strategic location.
Fibre-optic technology was discovered and developed at Harlow’s Standard Telecommunication Laboratories in the 1960s. The team that made the breakthrough was led by scientist Sir Charles Kao, and the Arise Innovation Hub stands next to the Kao Data Centre, home to the UK’s fastest supercomputer, Nvidia’s Cambridge-1.
A fibre connection has been set up linking the Arise Innovation Hub to the data centre and could provide game-changing opportunities for businesses in future. “This will allow companies working with big data and doing machine learning to process that information very quickly and tap into future open access supercomputers,” says Dr Vaughan.
As part of the Arise network, the Hub has close links with ARU’s Chelmsford campus, and the team runs a programme of in-person and virtual social events, as well as industry-specific seminars and special interest groups to help businesses develop and make useful connections.
Students are able to hone their skills and put what they’ve learned on their courses into action by undertaking work placements with companies based at the Hub.
“We see undergraduates and post-docs joining businesses as interns to help with short-term projects, then sometimes going on to be employed by those businesses,” says Dr Vaughan.
“The Harlow Arise Hub provides a fantastic location for companies looking to develop and be part of the wider ecosystem in the East of England.”