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STEAMhouse win Innovation Award

We’re equal parts honoured and excited to have been awarded the Innovation Award at the 2024 Education awards this year, for helping to drive digital innovation and education through our recently launched Digital Labs! The Digital Labs have been set up to drive digital innovation through expertise, equipment, community, and collaborative spaces, and it’s a testament to the hard work of the STEAM team, Birmingham City University and all of our partners and community to help digitally focussed students, individuals and businesses in the region to collaborate, innovate and grow.

Resulting from over £2.5 million pounds of investment, the Digital Labs are a high-tech addition to STEAMhouse’s existing facilities and services, designed to help accelerate the growth of local businesses education of students learning about the built environment through the exploration of digital tools and technology. Serving both commercial and research purposes, the Digital Labs have been set up to drive digital innovation through expertise, equipment, community, and collaborative spaces.

The Digital Labs comprise a Growth Lab and Create Lab for digital innovators and a SoundLab for specialised audio experimentation. Created in partnership with global engineering consultancy Arup, the SoundLab is the first facility of its kind in the West Midlands and the first to be integrated into a university, giving students at Birmingham City University access to the equipment and expertise of this ilk for the very first time.

BCU students are already making use of the new facilities through their current research. The first project ‘Aural Histories: Coventry 1451-1642’, is a UKRI-funded project which uses digital reconstruction to recreate the music and sounds of historic performance spaces which have been significantly changed over time or no longer exist.  These include the former Coventry Cathedral which was destroyed by enemy action on 14 November 1940 in the Blitz during the Second World War. This is the first project of many which will seek to recreate soundscapes from the past.

It was an honour to be amongst innovation and education excellence at the awards and to be recognised for the hard work in bringing this type of innovation to the West Midlands for the first time, and we’re looking forward to seeing where the Digital Labs take our region and education!

Want to find out more about our award winning facilities? Take a look at the Digital Labs here.