Anglia Ruskin to host biomedical science leaders

Published: 5 September 2017 at 11:00

Lord Ashcroft Building in Cambridge

Experts will discuss the UK’s post-Brexit future at annual HUCBMS conference

The 25th annual Heads of University Centres of Biomedical Sciences (HUCBMS) conference will take place at Anglia Ruskin University’s Cambridge campus on Wednesday, 6 September and Thursday, 7 September.

The main themes of this year’s conference are learning and teaching developments; research, innovation and impact; and internationalisation – with a particular focus on the impact of Brexit on the biomedical science sector.

On Thursday morning, Charles Brasted, Head of Public Law and Policy at Hogan Lovells, will discuss the legal and political issues arising from Brexit, while Paul Simmonds, Director of the Technopolis Group, will focus on its likely impact on research and innovation.

Commenting ahead of the conference, Brasted, a founding member of Hogan Lovells’ Brexit Taskforce and a leading authority on the constitutional, legal and policy implications of Brexit, said:

“Fifteen months on from the Brexit referendum, and six months in to an effective fifteen-month negotiating window, the future of the UK/EU relationship remains unclear, as does the path to that future.

“The UK is highly valued as a global springboard for Europe and a meeting point for the world, because of the strength and depth of its research and development capability, and for the access to global talent that it provides. Nowhere is that more true than in life sciences.  Whether it is in pharmaceutical research or in automotive manufacturing, projects, businesses and institutions have been built across borders on the foundation of frictionless access and collaboration.

“That is not just about customs checks and goods tariffs, but about the ability of individuals to move and work, and about the way in which our regulatory systems facilitate – or not – collaboration and cooperation.  While the UK will be seeking at a domestic level to maintain the vast bulk of EU rules after Brexit, it cannot alone deliver the mutual recognitions and supranational institutions that are embedded in many current arrangements.”

Other speakers include: Nick Hillman, CEO of the Higher Education Policy Institute, who will discuss 'The future of UK universities'; David Sweeney, Director of Research & Knowledge Exchange at HEFCE, who will talk about the 'Stern Review and future REF'; and Sam Meakin, Assistant Director, Subject-level TEF, Department for Education, who will discuss the 'TEF: Current policy and future plans'.

The conference is organised by Anglia Ruskin’s Faculty of Science & Technology. The full programme is available at