NBIC Annual Report 2022

The National Biofilms Innovation Centre (NBIC) Annual Report 2022 is now available to download. This report covers our key achievements to date, our future plans for policy, case studies, our international strategy and all of the Proof of Concept (POC) projects that we are funding.

Foreword – A few words from our Operations Director, Professor Jo Slater-Jefferies

The National Biofilms Innovation Centre (NBIC) remains focused on supporting and connecting the industrial and academic biofilm community across the UK and with our international partners. We judge ourselves by our ability to harness and translate the capability, knowledge and technology in the prevention, detection, management and engineering of biofilms across the UK.

We believe we are having significant impact across all of these dimensions. As you will see in this report, NBIC’s intent remains to behave in a national, inclusive and transparent way to benefit our community. It was wonderful to see many of our academic and industry partners at our All Partner meeting in November 2021. This was an opportunity for the NBIC community to review progress, successes, and challenges since our formation in December 2017, and to discuss how the UK biofilm community can continue to leverage its strength.

annual report 2021


I am delighted that our membership has further grown to 63 UK research institutions, and that these academic partners share our desire to collaborate and connect with the (approximately) 250 companies; which we continue to engage with across a range of sectors.

This year NBIC applied for further funding to build on its collective strengths as the UK’s national centre to drive and expand its global leadership at the international forefront of research, training, standardisation and innovation in biofilm technologies, addressing the grand challenges important to the UK’s future prosperity. We look forward to communicating the outcome of the application and launching our next phase in 2023.

We continue to deliver ambitious plans in our three key pillars:



Our funding has allowed us to continue to support our cohort of Interdisciplinary Research Fellows (IRFs) across our four core universities. They are all actively engaged in a mixture of underpinning research and projects with industry partners. In June 2022, the NBIC International Scientific Advisory Board evaluated our progress, future plans and the undertaken science, deeming NBIC as, “world-leading, delivering excellence in research, innovation and training”.



Out of the 83 Proof of Concept Projects awarded, 62 have now completed and we are working with the academic and industry partners to capture the impact of these. In November 2021, we held our Biofilm Prevention workshop. This provided a unique forum for accelerating academic-industry partnerships to allow prevention-based research approaches to be translated into innovation across multiple sectors. With our partners at SETsquared we launched the first Biofilms ICURe Sprint in March 2022. This programme is dedicated solely to research teams developing biofilm innovations. Our first cohort have recently completed the programme and we look forward to seeing how the teams develop their technologies.



We continue to build our cohort of PhD students across our four core universities for whom we are running a core Doctoral Training Programme (BITE). In October 2021 BBSRC awarded NBIC’s Industrial Advisory Board an annual allocation of funds from their Collaborative Training Partnerships (CTP) scheme to support interdisciplinary PhD studentships. The CTP scheme is a doctoral training programme directed at industrial research challenges, and delivered by consortia led by businesses in collaboration with research organisations.

In April 2022, Dr Mark Richardson stepped down as the CEO of NBIC. Mark’s dedication and commitment to NBIC and our principles has been instrumental in our successes. The Executive Management Team, Operational Team and NBIC Governance Boards would like to thank Mark for his part in building NBIC to the world-leading organisation that it is today.

Publication date: 22/08/2022. Author: The National Biofilms Innovation Centre. doi.org/10.5258/biofilms/008