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41 : UTC reveals its Research Road-Map to 2023

By the end of year 2016, the HCERES will have assessed all the UTC laboratories for the 5 year period, 2012-2017. The University is taking this opportunity to update its scientific research policy for the forthcoming contract (2018-2023). Interactions zooms in for its readers discovering the major orientations and how they will be implemented in the UTC research units.

41 : UTC reveals its Research Road-Map to 2023

UTC reveals its Research Road-Map to 2023

By the end of year 2016, the HCERES will have assessed all the UTC laboratories for the 5 year period, 2012-2017. The University is taking this opportunity to update its scientific research policy for the forthcoming contract (2018-2023). Interactions zooms in for its readers discovering the major orientations and how they will be implemented in the UTC research units.

Three … three is the magic number for UTC’s research policy in the coming years!

One – the stance claimed by UTC is that of a technological research intense university standing on 3 pillars:

·         seeking to understand to implement better, i.e., to advance and strengthen our scientific knowledge for the purpose of developing innovative technologies;

·         to implement in order to understand better, inasmuch as the design and testing of a technological system also serve as a source of progress for science;

·         to implement in order to act, inasmuch as the work done at UTC will contribute to answering societal expectations and challenges in the 21st Century.

 

Two – in coming years, the establishment will pursue its research activities along three major societal axes:

·         the transition to a bio-economy (valorisation of bioresources, development of the bio-refinery concept ...);

·         mobility, energy and sustainable cities;

·         health-care-related technologies.

 

Three – in order to bolster its technological research programmes and its societal commitments, seen as the two sides of a self-same dynamic approach, UTC places its emphasis on the key points: a challenge (sustainable mobility, ailing senior citizens staying at home …), a unique approach and with a privileged experimental ground, viz. the Living Lab. The main changes will occur on these last two points.

UTC’s singularity lies in its interdisciplinarity already underscored by the university authorities and which will be reinforced further. The systems addressed by the research community at UTC are becoming increasingly complex. And often, the complexity levels involved depend less on the technologies that are integrated in our research work, and more on their heterogeneous nature. Having said this, they recognizably resist any attempt to make a full representation of them and this implies that there be a change in paradigm for engineering sciences as a whole. Before, we only needed to adjust the real situation to the models offered by our scientists. Today, we must design models that allow us to take account of features that lie beyond real complexity (uncertainty and human factors, for instance). This therefore impales that we adopt a resolutely systemic approach, viz., a transverse approach to the problems we address. Hence the need to develop inter-disciplinary interactions between (and in) our laboratory units.

And again, singularity in the future will lie in a reinforced policy for its academic alliances, thereby widening its position in terms of its TRL (Technology Readiness Level) which is a measure of the maturity of a given technology with respect to the market-place – from 0 to 3 for basic research, from 4 to 6 for engineering science research and from 7 to 9 for development and later market introduction. Today, UTC is recognized as being excellent on the TRL 4 level. Our policy thrust will consist of reinforcing the lower value TRLs, viz., those that encounter scientific obstacles. To do so, UTC will increase substantially the number of its partnerships with basic research laboratories, notably those in the Sorbonne-Universities Cluster. In parallel, we shall endeavour to strengthen our higher rated TRLs by seeking to industrialize the streams we develop in Compiegne and this will call for more partnership resrecah with our socio-economic contacts.

As far as ‘Living Labs’ are concerned, UTC has made these a priority for experimentations and they natural prolong the logic of our adopting a singular approach. They effectively enable us to develop and test technology-intensive scale one demonstrators, not only to gain a better understanding of their inherent complexity, but also their utilizations (to implement in order to better understand) and likewise to prepare them up to pre-industrialization stages. And here again, development will involve partnership policies with industrialists, local authorities and representatives of the users communities.