Two Queen's Anniversary Prizes to be awarded to UCL centres
8 February 2003
UCL's Eastman Dental Institute has been recognised as a centre for excellence in the 2002 round of the Queen's Anniversary Prizes for Higher & Further Education, as has the Centre for Process Systems Engineering, run jointly with Imperial College.
It is the first time a dental school has been recognised in the awards, which are open to universities and colleges across the country. They acknowledge the exceptional contribution made by institutions to the intellectual, economic, cultural and social fabric of the nation. Since its inception in 1994, the prizes have been awarded biennially, with 20 prizewinners in each round. Four UCL centres have so far been recognised.
The Eastman represents an outstanding example of higher education cooperating with an associated specialist teaching hospital. By promoting innovation and partnerships, the institute has become a leading centre of excellence in orofacial healthcare sciences for graduate students, advanced research and patient care as well as being a major worldwide opinion former.
Innovation in oral healthcare
Professor Crispian Scully, the institute's director, explained: "Our entry, unlike the formal research and teaching assessment exercises, provided an opportunity to describe the entire scope of the institute's work, collaborations and corporate citizenship. We are proud of our reputation as an innovative member of the dental profession. The award provides timely recognition of the hard work of the staff who, particularly over the last ten years, have established the Eastman's eminent academic reputation in graduate dentistry studies worldwide."
The Eastman educates consultants, specialists, clinical teachers and research workers in all branches of dentistry. It has the largest concentration of graduate dental students in Europe, who can choose from 20 taught degree and research programmes.
Recently designated the first World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre in Orofacial Health, Disability & Culture, the institute conducts research with global benefits, from the development of photodynamic treatment of precancer to a low technology water decontamination system used extensively by UNICEF.
The Eastman also assists in planning national and international policy and practice in oral healthcare, and concentrates effort on areas that have an optimum effect on quality of life. Specialist areas include infection control and treatment, special needs including HIV, and the use of novel materials for gum and bone regeneration, tooth repair and implants.
Professor Scully said: "Prizewinner status will be at the heart of the institute's corporate communications during the four years of its currency. It will inform graduate student recruitment, contract research proposals and other commercial activities. A fundraising campaign in support of currently under-resourced areas is under review."
Process systems excellence
Another prizewinner was the Centre for Process Systems Engineering, a joint venture between the chemical engineering and electrical engineering departments at UCL and Imperial College London (ICL). The centre undertakes interdisciplinary research in design, control, operations management and modelling for the process industries, including oil and gas, pharmaceuticals and fine chemicals, food and beverage, petrochemicals and consumer goods industries.
Opened in 1989, the centre conducts world class research with relevance to industry, underpinned by study of underlying theory and the development of appropriate numerical methods and computer software tools. All departments involved with the centre received either 5 or 5* ratings in the most recent Research Assessment Exercise.The chemical engineering subject panel stated: "The centre has, without doubt, become one of the major centres of excellence in its area of expertise in the world and is seen as the benchmark against which other world centres are judged."
UCL's Professor David Bogle (Chemical Engineering), the centre's research director, said: "Our research is organised in a matrix structure of four interdisciplinary areas: product and process design, process operations, process measurement and control, and process modelling and numerical methods. Important components of all these areas are the testing of theory on realistic examples, demonstration on industrial problems and the development of innovative mechanisms for transfer of the technology to practice."
UCL's previous prizewinners were the Medical School (1994) and the Institute of Child Health (2000).
To find out more about the institute or the centre use the links below.