Impact: Policy, Animal Health and Welfare: Improved sow and piglet
welfare and recommendations and codes of practice for farrowing and
lactation systems that better meet sow and piglet needs.
Significance: Farrowing crates restrict sow movements interfering
with natural sow behaviour and increasing psychological distress. Used
predominantly to protect piglets, SRUC research demonstrated that piglet
survival improved in loose-housed environments, undermining crate use.
Beneficiaries: Farmers, sows and piglets, the general public
Attribution: Drs Baxter and Jarvis, Professors Lawrence and Roehe
(SRUC). Research collaboration was with Prof Sandra Edwards, University of
Reach: International legislative bans on farrowing crates;
voluntary industry uptake of non-crate systems; EU
recommendations/legislation on housing at farrowing, guidelines for
keeping pigs (e.g. RSPCA Freedom Food).
Impact on health and welfare: The health and welfare of laying
hens has been improved by the EU-wide ban on the use of small, barren
battery cages, enabled by UoE research on the relationship between cage
design and welfare.
Impact on public policy and services: The EU banned conventional
battery cages for laying hens through a directive that came into effect on
1st January 2012. New Zealand followed with its own ban in
Impact on production: Farmers have changed from housing laying
hens in battery cages to using more welfare-friendly furnished cages or
Impact on commerce: In the UK, over £400M has been spent to meet
the standards laid down by the EU directive.
Beneficiaries: Laying hens in Europe and New Zealand; farmers who
use furnished cages as an economically efficient alternative to
Significance and Reach: The improved welfare of over 1.3 billion
laying hens in Europe and New Zealand.
Attribution: All research was led by Dr Michael Appleby,
University of Edinburgh (1984-2001), with collaborators at the Roslin
Institute (now UoE), Uppsala and Bristol.
Hundreds of millions of laying hens in the European Community are now
kept in enriched cages with significantly more space than conventional
battery cages and with specific provision for nesting, scratching and
perching. Research undertaken at Bristol University provided much of the
evidence base for the full implementation of the relevant European
directive in January 2012; the prohibition of the conventional battery
cage and the introduction of a superior, scientifically researched
alternative. This has had a dramatic impact on husbandry standards and
the welfare of laying hens. With Bristol's involvement, similar
progress has also been made in countries beyond Europe.
BEAA's large-scale research designing and testing alternative grazing
management systems for
the uplands has achieved impact on the environment and economy.
Environmental policy and its
implementation via agri-environment schemes has been directly and
indirectly influenced, with the
evidence provided by the research vital to the development of grazing
prescriptions and related
payment structures by government agencies and conservation bodies. The
results have also
benefitted the upland farming community by identifying opportunities for
improved productivity and
hence economic viability; through e.g. more efficient use of pasture
resources leading to higher
growth rates for forage-based systems and reduced reliance on purchased
feed and fertiliser.
Automotive design analysis software based on qualitative reasoning
research in the Advanced Reasoning Group at Aberystwyth is deployed at
more than 200 automotive and aeronautic OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers
world-wide. The software necessitates companies changing their process for
performing design analysis, and companies are willing to do this because
of the attendant benefits.
The major benefits of use of the software are early feedback on potential
problems with the design of automotive systems, and improved safety of
automotive designs. Related benefits are improved product time to market,
and cost savings. A representative example of production savings of $2.5
million has been given for use of the software on a single product design,
as well as Ford Motor Company's estimate of $20M per year saved in just
Impact: Economic, public policy and animal health and welfare:
Selective breeding based upon identification of PRNP genotypes can
eliminate animals that are susceptible to scrapie from the flock.
Significance: UK sheep meat exports are worth >£380million.
Breeding for scrapie resistance protected the sheep industry from similar
damage to that inflicted by BSE on cattle and the UK economy.
Beneficiaries: Farmers, animals, consumers
Attribution: Professor Hunter and Dr. Goldmann (Roslin Institute,
now part of UoE) identified polymorphisms of the PrP (PRNP) gene
linked to scrapie susceptibility and resistance in sheep.
Reach: International, programmes breeding for resistance to
scrapie in sheep are now used in the UK, Europe and USA.
Key findings of two University of Glasgow research programmes have
transformed the UK egglaying
industry, driving substantial improvements in productivity and bird
welfare. First, two of the
largest international poultry-breeding companies adopted an innovative new
tool for assessing
eggshell quality that was validated by University of Glasgow researchers.
This tool has improved
eggshell quality through selective breeding, with increased numbers of
undamaged saleable eggs
(saving approximately £10 million annually in the UK alone), as well as
enhancing the hatchability
of breeding stock eggs. Second, University of Glasgow research on the
long-term health and
welfare implications of infrared beak trimming influenced UK policy
debate, preventing a ban on
beak trimming (due to be enacted in 2011) that would have exposed 35
million laying hens to
potential pecking injury or death, as well as costing the industry an
estimated £4.82-£12.3 million
Practical Waveform Engineering, developed at Cardiff, is having a major
impact on how modern- day microwave power amplifiers are designed,
delivering real competitive advantages for global communications companies
such as Nokia-Siemens-Networks and M/A-COM.
Economic impact is through reduced time-to-market and lower
design costs, leading to high- performance power amplifier products.
Examples include $40M revenue and employment of additional staff for
M/A-Com, and the successful spin-off company Mesuro Ltd., generating
revenue in excess of £2.5M.
Impact on practice is through successful demonstration of
new device technologies and amplifier architectures, the introduction of
PWE-based CAD models, and most significantly, the introduction of the
"Cardiff Model" into mainstream simulation tools.
Environmental Impact is by improving the efficiency of
power amplifiers and significantly reducing the carbon contribution of
mobile communications systems, translating into savings of approximately
£2.5M/year and a 17 kiloton reduction in CO2 emission for a
typical EU network.
Led by Professor Andrews, a computational method for real time mission
planning, based on
Binary Decision Diagrams (BDD), was developed in the Mathematical Sciences
Loughborough University (LU) from 1993-2003. This is fast and accurate and
can be used to
support decision-making on system utilisation in real-time operation,
which has led to the ability
to diagnose in flight faults for unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)
The research has changed the understanding and awareness of the
advantages of BDD, resulting
in integration into major industrial trials and proprietary software
products, including at BAE
Systems, one of the world's largest companies in an area of vital
importance to UK security and
economic development. The methodology has attracted significant research
collaborative programmes with industry.
Impact: Policy. Developed a humane culling method for large
numbers of poultry in preparation
for an outbreak of a notifiable disease such as avian flu (Highly
Pathogenic Avian Influenza, HPAI),
which was adopted by Defra.
Significance: In the event of a major disease outbreak, the large
scale culling of infected birds
would need to be accomplished in humane and cost-effective way.
Beneficiaries: Disease control authorities in all UK Government
domains (England & Wales,
Scotland, Northern Ireland) — more effective statutory controls; poultry
production industries —
reduced financial losses in case of outbreaks; the wider public — reduced
Attribution: Prof. Sparks, Dr. Sandilands (SRUC).
Reach: All UK animal health related Government domains.