Open for Business

The EIRA team have been working remotely from home for the last few weeks to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus, Covid-19. We’ve had to rethink how our daily operations, research projects, events and training for businesses and academics can go ahead in these trying times, taking on board the latest guidelines from Public Health England and the UK Government, but rest assured we are still very much open for business.

Nearly a month in to working from home, we’re quickly learning how our resources and talent across the region can really be a force for good. Working collaboratively across the East of England with our 7 university partners is already highlighting to the region the amazing work happening to help individuals and businesses under threat.

If you’re a business who wants to find out about the support available to you right now, we think these links could help you navigate your way through the situation:

Covid-19 Business Support (Innovate UK)

Covid-19 Business Support (UK Government) 

Coronavirus Resources (Beauhurst)

In additon to the support for businesses, our university partners have been hard at work taking a number of actions to combat the current pandemic.

The University of East Anglia are helping the NHS cope with the increasing demand for hand sanitisers and ventilators. UEA have launched a project to 3D print ventilator parts, masks and other critical equipment needed to fight the virus pandemic. More on this story here.

Scientists at UEA have also been manufacturing hand sanitiser, but need more bottling supplies and ethanol. If you are a business that can help to provide these, the team would love to speak to you, so please email: [email protected] .

The University of Kent are also busy working to combat Covid-19. Dr. Jeremy Rossman, a virologist in the School of Biosciences posted this explainer blog. Meanwhile researchers from Kent’s Canterbury campus are busy testing a theory developed by Oxford University that up to half of the British population could have already had Covid-19.

The Universities of East Anglia and Kent are also collaborating on a project to develop a vaccine for Covid-19.

The University of Essex is working on research to develop treatments for the coronavirus and modelling responses. Life science researchers from the institution are gearing up to investigate different strategies to tackle the virus by blocking it from entering the lungs and reducing the inflammatory response. This research could provide new options for treating the disease.

At the University of Suffolk, a platform developed by Web Development lecturer, Sean Preston, is being used to connect volunteers in local communities to better coordinate localized support for those self-isolating.

So whilst many of us will be working from the relative safety of our homes, it is very clear that universities have a crucial role to play in fighting the pandemic. UKRI have updated information on their website that highlights the importance of carrying on with science and research which is of national critical urgency.

We will be updating the EIRA website with more news and business support information as and when we have it, so please do check back soon!



Photo Credit: Hello I’m Nik 🎞 on Unsplash