A Tay Cities Engineering Partnership has been given the green light to create a multi-million-pound Engineering Partnership Innovation Centre, marking a significant milestone for the engineering sector in Scotland.
Receiving approval for funding from the Scottish Government, the Tay Cities Engineering Partnership will bring together expertise from training organisations, public sector bodies and engineering employers across the Tay Cities Region, establishing a regional Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing network in the North-East of Scotland.
The Scottish Government have committed up to £2 million to the Tay Cities Engineering Partnership, as part of the Tay Cities Region Deal, which will drive the transformation of manufacturing processes required to meet the ambitions of The Fourth Industrial Revolution.
The new collaboration includes the creation of a state-of-the-art centre for training, demonstration, and product prototyping, whilst developing foundation to graduate level and upskilling programmes to meet skills demand and enhance employability, career development and staff up-skilling.
From the implementation of robotics and artificial intelligence to the digital skills needed to adapt to future engineering, design and technology methods, the new innovative engineering centre will accelerate the pace of research and development needed for inclusive growth within the sector whilst crucially delivering benefits to businesses and the economy.
Alison Smith, Director of Vibrant Communities and Sustainable Growth at Angus Council, said: “Over the last couple of years, the economic and business environment has changed significantly, placing more importance on innovation and skills. As a result, there is a growing need for businesses to adopt new digital technologies, develop renewable sources of energy and cleaner manufacturing to reach net zero.
“Angus Council is delighted that the business case for the Tay Cities Engineering Partnership has been given full approval. This marks a huge step forward for the sector and we look forward to working with our partners to build the profile of engineering as a career opportunity for all, develop training opportunities, and provide business support.”
Simon Hewitt, Principal Dundee & Angus College, said: “The development of skills within this vital area is essential for both the local and regional economy to growth and thrive. This partnership, and the exciting Engineering Partnership Innovation Centre facility being developed at our Arbroath campus, will provide a real springboard for the necessary skills and training opportunities needed to develop the ‘engineer of the future’.
The use of data, AI, robotics and VR will be integral to the delivery as we prepare local and regional businesses and communities for Scotland’s next steps in the path to net zero and a future in renewable energy.”
Scottish Government Economy Secretary, Kate Forbes, said: “The Tay Cities Engineering Partnership is an excellent example of the public and private sectors working together to keep Scotland at the forefront of engineering and manufacturing innovation, creating new opportunities for our young people to develop the skills they will need to flourish in our future workplaces.
“Our £2 million investment comes at a crucial time, as Scotland recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic and we build the innovative wellbeing economy that will drive our future prosperity.”
Working with the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland, the Tay Cities Engineering Partnership will bring together key private and public organisations, including Angus Council, Dundee & Angus College, Fife College, Perth College UHI, Perth and Kinross Council and Angus Training Group.