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Thomas Ashton Institute for Risk and Regulatory Research

Programmes and projects

The Thomas Ashton Institute, working with colleagues from across The University of Manchester and beyond, are delivering a wide range of projects.

Keeping the UK Building Safely - KUBS

The Thomas Ashton Institute is working with stakeholders from the construction industry to deliver a scoping review and a proposal for a research programme that will help build a bio secure construction sector. The project, led by Professor Neil Bourne, is focused around five work packages, drawing colleagues from across the University and HSE.  This project has been commissioned as part of the PROTECT COVID-19 National Core Study on transmission and environment.

Learn more about the KUBS project on the PROTECT National Core Study website

PROTECT COVID-19 National Core Study on transmission and environment

This study, which forms part of the wider COVID-19 National Core Studies programme led by UK Government Chief Scientific Adviser Sr Patrick Vallance, is improving our understanding of how SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) is transmitted from person to person, and how this varies in different settings and environments. This improved understanding will enable more effective measures to stop transmission, saving lives and getting society back towards 'normal'

Learn more about the PROTECT project

Machine learning-powered safety leading indicators for enhancing safety performance in high risk industries – with Emex

The project focuses on analysing the relationships between safety leading and lagging indicators.

High-Performance Graphene Enhanced Cement: A revolutionary Innovation in Low Carbon Manufacturing Process

Development of a Safety Culture Model with ONR

Institute colleagues from the Alliance Manchester Business School have recently been awarded a project, working with the ONR to develop a model of organisational safety culture that specifies the key dimensions and attributes of safety culture in UK nuclear industries

Impact Accelerator Award (IAA) Project with Tended

Institute colleagues are working with Tended, a tech start-up company that designs wearable safety devices, to bridge the gap between human error and safety behaviours.  This project will develop a knowledge base for research into the characteristics of safety cultures with a view to producing a diagnostic tool that will be as accurate as a psychometric test.

Discovering Safety

The programme works with industry, academics and governments from the global community, generating bespoke solutions for local contexts, including the challenges faced in developing countries.

Colleagues from the institute are delivering projects in text mining and construction risk knowledge management using BIM.

You can find out more about Discovering Safety on its dedicated website

Health Science framework projects

The institute was appointed as preferred supplier for the provision of health-related research services to provide specialist technical support to HSE for input into multidisciplinary science research projects, contributing to their Health at Work priorities. Technical support is provided in the areas of health research and associated data analysis and longitudinal epidemiological workplace studies looking at current and cumulative (retrospective) exposure as well as information on health status and well being.

Study to research role of delivery workers in preventing COVID-19 transmission

Professor Martie van Tongeren and Dr Hua Wei are leading a study into the role of gig workers and delivery supply chains in preventing disease transmission. The study will inform the UK’s policy making in social distancing and coordination of supply chains as a key component of national response to pandemics.

You can read more about the project on The University of Manchester’s news page

Bio-electronic monitoring of light exposure and circadian rhythms

Led by a team from the Centre for Biological Timing alongside TAI colleagues, the project aims to create new flexible electronics for wearable devices that monitor light exposure.

NERC Digital Solutions Programme

The Institute was named as delivery partner in a NERC grant looking at data integration and sharing.  The team is building a Digital Solutions Hub (Hub) as a gateway to a broad set of inter-connected toolkits that facilitate improved access and better use of NERC data.  The digital platform will have especially broad impacts on the environment, society and the economy by facilitating easier access and use of NERC data in business, government and society.