A new study of Diamond Light Source, the UK’s national synchrotron funded by STFC, shows the facility has had an impact worth nearly £2 billion since 2007.
The study by Technopolis and Diamond estimates a cumulative monetised impact of at least £1.8 billion from the UK’s synchrotron, based at Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire, reflecting very favourably with the £1.2b investment made in the facility to date.
The study, published on 26 May, set out to measure and demonstrate Diamond’s scientific, technological, societal, and economic benefits. To launch the report, Diamond is hosting a webinar to share the findings showing the significant impact achieved to date.
Chief executive of Diamond, Professor Andrew Harrison OBE, commented: “Diamond’s mission is to keep the UK at the forefront of scientific research. We do this by providing our users in academia and industry access to our state-of-the-art facilities enabling them to fulfil their research goals across a wide variety of scientific disciplines. This report illustrates the fantastic return on investment and brilliant science being achieved by our 14,000-strong user community who are tackling some of the most challenging scientific questions of the 21st century. We are so grateful to our funding agencies UKRI’s Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) and the Wellcome Trust for their trust and ongoing support.”
Diamond was set-up as an independent not-for-profit company through a joint venture, between the UKRI’s STFC and one of the world’s largest biomedical charities, the Wellcome Trust – each respectively owning 86% and 14% of the shareholding. Highlights from the report include:
Professor Mark Thomson, executive chair of STFC, said: “Diamond is an asset to STFC’s world-leading science estate at RAL. With support from STFC, the Diamond research facility continues to deliver both economic growth and research impact on behalf of the UK. It brings together the best of British science, as well as fostering multi-disciplinary research activity with a wide range of global collaborators. Diamond continues to deliver against real-world challenges, with some of their recent successes including enhancing our understanding of the Covid-19 virus.”
The Launch Webinar will be chaired by Sandra Ribeiro, chair of lightsources.org. Attendees will be given insight into the methodology of the study from the team involved from both Diamond and Technopolis, as well as a chance to hear the perspectives from our stakeholders at UKRI and the Wellcome Trust on impact and evaluation. In addition, four key users will give ignite talks on how Diamond has impacted on their scientific research: