Saturday, 30 May 2020

Huawei strikes five-year partnership with Imperial College London

by Harry Baldock, Total Telecom
Tuesday 19 May 20

The Chinese giant will invest £5 million over five years into the university to help nurture the UK’s budding innovation ecosystem

Huawei have today announced a £5 million “strategic partnership” with Imperial College London in an effort to help develop the next generation of entrepreneurs and data scientists.   The multi-faceted deal will see Huawei directly supporting Imperial’s facilities through providing an indoor 5G wireless network and AI Cloud platform. These technologies will help to advance the research of Imperial's Data Science Institute and its Enterprise Lab…

Huawei have today announced a £5 million “strategic partnership” with Imperial College London in an effort to help develop the next generation of entrepreneurs and data scientists.
 
The multi-faceted deal will see Huawei directly supporting Imperial’s facilities through providing an indoor 5G wireless network and AI Cloud platform. These technologies will help to advance the research of Imperial's Data Science Institute and its Enterprise Lab, as well as the SME ecosystem associated with the university.
 
The company will also become the founding partner of the new Leonardo Centre, a part of Imperial’s Business School that will be dedicated to researching ways to revitalise global economies and communities in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
 
“This partnership with Huawei will help enhance our mission to transform society through world-class research that addresses the key challenges facing businesses today,” explained Professor Francisco Veloso, Dean of Imperial College Business School.
 
“In today’s uncertain business landscape, there’s a much greater need than ever before for business leaders to experiment with and scale innovative enterprises that have a long-lasting societal impact. Imperial College Business School is conducting groundbreaking research on sustainable business and we look forward to strengthening our position on this topic through this collaboration.”
 
Imperial College is becoming a bastion in the fight against the coronavirus, notably being one of the institutions working alongside Chinese researchers to help develop a vaccine for the disease. The university’s leading research in this area has been influential in directing government policy throughout this crisis. 
 
But with Imperial College playing such an instrumental role in assisting the government in recent times, this sponsorship by Huawei is sure to spark discussion around the Chinese company’s position within the UK’s academic ecosystem. 
 
The UK took the decision to bar Huawei technology from the core of the UK’s 5G networks back in January, with security concerns, largely fuelled by US rhetoric, being a key factor in the decision. Both Huawei and Beijing reject these allegations, while the US continues to try to limit the company’s influence on the world stage. Just last week, the Trump administration extended the trade ban on Huawei for another year.
 
However, when it comes to its relationship with Imperial College, however, both parties are quick to point out that their working relationship extends back almost a decade.
 
"We have enjoyed nearly a decade of highly productive collaboration with Imperial College and today's announcement is the latest chapter in that partnership,"said Huawei VP Victor Zhang.
 
"We have a wide range of strategic partners from industry and business around the globe. These [partnerships] have yielded new ideas, new applications and new impacts," explained Ian Walmsley, provost of Imperial College London.
 
"Huawei is one of these partners, who we've worked with for some time and whose expertise in wireless technology will help us explore how the digital world will evolve and, indeed, will help us create the future digital ecosystem."
 
 
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