CSIC Innovation and Knowledge Centre Phase 2

Funder: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council

Dimensions: grant.4849857



  1. (1) University of Cambridge, grid.5335.0
  2. (2) University of California, Berkeley, grid.47840.3f

Research Organisations


Globally, national infrastructure is facing significant challenges: - Ageing assets: Much of the UK's existing infrastructure is old and no longer fit for purpose. In its State of the Nation Infrastructure 2014 report the Institution of Civil Engineers stated that none of the sectors analysed were "fit for the future" and only one sector was "adequate for now". The need to future-proof existing and new infrastructure is of paramount importance and has become a constant theme in industry documents, seminars, workshops and discussions. - Increased loading: Existing infrastructure is challenged by the need to increase load and usage - be that number of passengers carried, numbers of vehicles or volume of water used - and the requirement to maintain the existing infrastructure while operating at current capacity. - Changing climate: projections for increasing numbers and severity of extreme weather events mean that our infrastructure will need to be more resilient in the future. These challenges require innovation to address them. However, in the infrastructure and construction industries tight operating margins, industry segmentation and strong emphasis on safety and reliability create barriers to introducing innovation into industry practice. CSIC is an Innovation and Knowledge Centre funded by EPSRC and Innovate UK to help address this market failure, by translating world leading research into industry implementation, working with more than 40 industry partners to develop, trial, provide and deliver high-quality, low cost, accurate sensor technologies and predictive tools which enable new ways of monitoring how infrastructure behaves during construction and asset operation, providing a whole-life approach to achieving sustainability in an integrated way. It provides training and access for industry to source, develop and deliver these new approaches to stimulate business and encourage economic growth, improving the management of the nation's infrastructure and construction industry. Our collaborative approach, bringing together leaders from industry and academia, accelerates the commercial development of emerging technologies, and promotes knowledge transfer and industry implementation to shape the future of infrastructure. Phase 2 funding will enable CSIC to address specific challenges remaining to implementation of smart infrastructure solutions. Over the next five years, to overcome these barriers and create a self-sustaining market in smart infrastructure, CSIC along with an expanded group of industry and academic partners will: - Create the complete, innovative solutions that the sector needs by integrating the components of smart infrastructure into systems approaches, bringing together sensor data and asset management decisions to improve whole life management of assets and city scale infrastructure planning; spin-in technology where necessary, to allow demonstration of smart technology in an integrated manner. - Continue to build industry confidence by working closely with partners to demonstrate and deploy new smart infrastructure solutions on live infrastructure projects. Develop projects on behalf of industry using seed-funds to fund hardware and consumables, and demonstrate capability. - Generate a compelling business case for smart infrastructure solutions together with asset owners and government organisations based on combining smarter information with whole life value models for infrastructure assets. Focus on value-driven messaging around the whole system business case for why smart infrastructure is the future, and will strive to turn today's intangibles into business drivers for the future. - Facilitate the development and expansion of the supply chain through extending our network of partners in new areas, knowledge transfer, smart infrastructure standards and influencing policy.

Funding information

Funding period: 2016-2023

Funding amount: EUR 3662003

Grant number: EP/N021614/1