Innovation grant awarded to The City Law School's business advice clinic
A legal advice clinic based at City University London has been recognised for its ground-breaking approach by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO). City Enterprise Services was selected as one of the UK's ten most innovative university projects by The Fast Forward Competition.
The initiative is designed to encourage universities to collaborate on inventive approaches to knowledge transfer. The winning projects create new products and services for businesses and the wider economy.
City Enterprise Services offers accessible legal and commercial advice to owners of small businesses and start-ups. The IPO grant of £12,500 will be used to expand the clinic's connections with the Tech City community and develop a suite of best practice commercial legal advice materials aimed at the start-up sector.
Founded in 2011 by Reader in Law, David Collins and City alumnus Eric Klotz, the project has already assisted more than 300 start-ups and small businesses in London. It is staffed by City Law School students who are supervised by local professionals including barristers, solicitors and accountants. An incorporated elective module on the subject was launched for the first time this academic year. David Collins commented:
"We are delighted to have had our clinic recognized by the Intellectual Property Office and will use the grant to promote the service more broadly and to enlarge the advice-giving role of the students. This kind of practical legal education is crucial for the City Law School to remain competitive and continue to attract the best students across all our programmes."
A total of 12 entries from the Fast Forward Competition have been awarded prizes. They come from areas such as healthcare, design, clean technology construction and social enterprise, engineering and aerospace. Lord Younger, Minister for Intellectual Property said:
"The winning projects have taken the best of UK research and academic knowhow and collaborated with innovative industries to capitalise on each others' strengths. It is vital for universities and industry to find new ways of working with different partners in new areas and supporting growth. These projects embody that mindset and I congratulate them on their success."
The Fast Forward Competition is open to all UK universities and Public Sector Research Establishments (PSRE). It has provided £2 million in funding to 35 projects since it started in 2010.