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The British Queen to honor Ben-Gurion University President Prof. Rivka Carmi

The British Queen to honor Ben-Gurion University President Prof. Rivka Carmi

Buckingham Palace announced that Professor Rivka Carmi, President of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, is to receive a rare honour from the Queen. Prof. Carmi will receive an appointment of an honorary Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE), for her work to deepen scientific and academic relations between the UK and Israel. Prof. Carmi, the first woman to serve as president of an Israeli university, has played a vital role in strengthening scientific collaboration between the UK and Israel, as the founding co-chair of the UK Israel Science Council since its inception in 2010. Under her leadership, the Science Council promotes joint academic work, such as cutting-edge stem cell research to tackle some of the world’s most dreadful diseases. Prof. Carmi said in response to receiving the award: “I am thrilled to accept this honour which recognizes the increasing links between the UK and Israel, especially in science. The UK Israel Science council, set up at the behest of Ambassador Gould, has been a flagship initiative, demonstrating the great potential for collaboration between our two countries. We are committed to improving the health of all nations and sharing our scientific discoveries”. Commenting on the award, British Ambassador to Israel Matthew Gould said: “I am delighted that Her Majesty has chosen to honour Rivka with this award. Rivka is an inspiration, to me and many others. Her leadership and commitment to strengthen science collaboration between our countries has made a huge difference. Israel is lucky to have her as a leader; Britain is lucky to have her as a friend.” The past few months have witnessed a sharp increase in scientific collaboration, further engaging British and Israeli researchers. These include the second round of projects of the BIRAX joint medical research initiative, launch of several student exchange programmes and scholarships in top universities such as Oxford and Cambridge, and a unique cooperation agreement between the UK’s prestigious Royal Society and the Israeli Academy of Sciences and Humanities.]]>

Oxford University raises $474M fund to bankroll tech spinouts

Oxford University raises $474M fund to bankroll tech spinouts

  OSI is a newly-formed company that will, for a minimum of 15 years, be the contractually preferred partner of the University and its wholly owned subsidiary, Isis Innovation Limited, to provide capital to, and develop, spin-out companies based on research from the University’s Mathematical, Physical and Life Sciences Division and its Medical Sciences Division. The board of OSI is chaired by David Norwood, who has had a long career building a number of science, technology and investment companies. Alan Aubrey, CEO of IP Group, will serve on OSI’s board in a non-executive capacity. The six cornerstone investors in the initial round, which totals £210 million, include Invesco Asset Management Limited, Lansdowne Partners (UK) LLP, IP Group plc (LSE: IPO), Oxford University Endowment Fund, the Wellcome Trust and Woodford Investment Management LLP. OSI may seek to raise up to an aggregate total of £300 million through a second close of up to £90 million later in 2015. David Norwood, Chairman of OSI, said: “The University of Oxford has been the birthplace of some of the best science in the world and some of the biggest ideas in history. The agreement with OSI and the strength of the cornerstone investors create a fantastic opportunity to turn world-leading science into market-leading companies and the opportunity to create significant value for all stakeholders.” The University aims to be a leader in innovation and entrepreneurship, building on its position as a world-leading centre of learning, teaching and research. University staff have won a total of 32 Nobel prizes across Chemistry, Physics and Medicine. Oxford was ranked number one for the quality of its research in the UK’s recent Research Excellence Framework and is consistently ranked among the top three universities in the world. The two science divisions are supported by a total research spend of over £400m annually. The University also has a long track record of developing global science and technology businesses through Isis. Isis has established over 100 spin-out companies based on technology developed by the University of Oxford researchers since 2000, including eight in the last year.]]>