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Talent and Innovation

Driving entrepreneurs, innovation and business growth 

Academic centres of excellence, global businesses and pioneering organisations, each with specialist areas in research, development and industry collaboration, call the Thames Valley home.


With a comprehensive talent pool, possessing some of the strongest commercial and technical skills that drive entrepreneurship, innovation and business growth, the region attracts and retains the highest calibre of staff.


Technical specialists across many industrial sectors collaborate with renowned institutions based in the region, to commercialise products and deliver projects. The region routinely has one of the highest outputs of patent generation and start-ups in the UK.

Thames Valley Universities 

Oxford Brookes

University of Oxford

Ranked the number one university in the world for the fourth year in a row, it is associated with 52 Nobel Prize winners, 27 British Prime Ministers and notable alumni, including Stephen Hawking and Oscar Wilde.

University of Reading

Housing Henley Business School, one of the oldest and most respected schools in Europe, the University is also renowned for its pioneering research on the dynamics and physics of weather and climate.

Oxford Brookes University

Listed in Times Higher Education Young University Rankings as the number one university in the UK for teaching and research with an an international reputation.

Buckingham Uni

Bucks New University

Offering courses in business and management sectors, creative and cultural industries and public sector, Bucks New University has well-established connections with organisations, including the Thames Valley Police and several NHS trusts.

University of Buckingham

Founded on the principles of free thinking, it is esteemed for being entrepreneurial and innovative, and is the only university in the UK to be independent of direct government support.

University Technical Colleges (UTCs)

Delivering innovative, high-quality education that combines technical, practical and academic learning, University Technical Colleges (UTCs) are schools for 14-19-year-olds. With a special focus on science, technology, engineering and maths subjects, they are not academically selective and do not charge fees.


The tailored curriculum is designed to be applied in the workplace and includes one or two technical specialisms that are linked to skills gaps in the region. Each UTC is backed by employers and a local university who work with staff to develop the curriculum.


There are four University Technical Colleges in the Thames Valley, each offering state-of-the-art facilities equipped with the latest technology.


Discover more in this video interview with Michael Halliday of UTC Reading.

Other Academic Centres of Excellence

National Film and Television School (Buckinghamshire)

James Cowper Kreston
Lambert Smith Hampton