EUniverCities logo

A new City Centre Innovation Hub for Exeter

A new City Centre Innovation Hub for Exeter


Published on 26 April 2023

Share this: Twitter,etc
The University of Exeter and Exeter City Council are collaborating closely on the development of a new Innovation Hub for Exeter. Funded by UK Shared Prosperity Funding which invests in local priorities (communities and place, support for local businesses, and people and skills), the Hub will provide a City Centre facility from which organisations and individuals can access innovation and entrepreneurship support and resources from the University’s SETsquared Team.

The SETsquared Partnership was formed in 2002 in order to support its university members in creating regional economic impact through the provision of Business Support to early-stage High Tech, High Growth businesses. SETsquared now includes the six leading research-intensive Universities of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey, who share best practice around Business Acceleration, Research Commercialisation, Student Entrepreneurship and Scale Up – Collaborative R&D.

Excitingly, the Innovation Hub will be the first city centre premises for the University of Exeter and will provide a space from which the SETsquared team can deliver “Pre-Accelerator” programmes to support innovation development, testing and validation. It will also help to increase awareness of, and provide easier access to support products and services offered by SETsquared and other University teams, such as Green Consultants, and Help to Grow.

In addition to increasing the visibility and accessibility of university services and resources, the Hub will provide help to build connections between entrepreneurial and innovative students, and the Exeter business community, and enable student start-up founders to develop support networks in Exeter and across the region. The Hub will also provide a space for hosting events and activities to foster interaction between university staff and city-based organisations, and for promoting opportunities for participation or collaboration in research activity. There will also be support available for students and researchers to develop new ventures which help to address city and societal challenges.

Longer term, the University and the City Council believe that increased visibility and accessibility of these services, will facilitate the recruitment of Exeter graduates by local businesses, thus helping to increasing the retention of graduates in the City and the wider region.