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Our Partner Organisations

The SOFI2 CDT is formed by the three universities: Durham University, University of Edinburgh and the University of Leeds in a global consortium with industrial partners, major research facilities and international universities and institutes. Where possible links to our global partner institutions are listed below as well as the sectors that our industrial partners occupy to show the breadth of the application of soft matter research.

Industrial Partners

AGMA products have professional uses across a range of sectors, from Cleanroom Sanitisation and Environmental Hygiene to Industrial Cleaning, Corrosion Prevention and Detection.
AkzoNobel is the largest global paint and coatings company and a major producer of specialty chemicals. They supply industries and consumers worldwide with innovative products and are passionate about developing sustainable answers for our customers. The AkzoNobel portfolio includes well known brands such as Dulux, Sikkens, International and Eka.
Ashland Specialty Ingredients provides specialty additives and functional ingredients, including cellulose ethers and synthetic polymers.
A global pharmaceutical company with a major UK presence.
Applied Graphene Materials is a leading innovator in graphene dispersion and application technology.
Bayer Crop Services provides crop protection products and services to help shape the future of farming in a way that benefits everyone.
Croda International is a global leader in speciality chemicals, sold to a wide range of markets- from Personal Care to Health Care; from Crop Care to Coatings and Polymers.
Devro offers a broad portfolio of colllagen casing products catering to the wide-ranging requirements of customers.
DuPont Teijin Films has been putting leading-edge science to work to provide innovative filmic solutions for designers, engineers, specifiers and end-users.
Epigem is a polymer micro engineering company specialising in the development and manufacture of microfluidic devices, micro optical components and printed electronics.
Futamura produces a range of plastic films for a range of applications from packaging to industrial applications.
GSK is a science-led global healthcare company that researches and develops a broad range of innovative medicines and brands. GSK products are used by millions of people around the world, helping them to do more, feel better and live longer.
IBM (International Business Machines) ranks among the world’s largest information technology companies, providing a wide spectrum of hardware, software and services offerings.
Infineum International Ltd. is a world leader in the formulation, manufacturing and marketing of petroleum additives for lubricants and fuels. Established in January 1999, Infineum is a joint venture of two of the most venerable names in lubricants and fuels, ExxonMobil and Shell. We number among our customers many of the world’s most recognised consumer brands.
Innovia Films is a leading global producer of speciality high performance Biaxially Oriented Polypropylene (BOPP) and Cellulose films for food packaging, tobacco overwrap and labels.
Lucite International is a global leader in the design, development and manufacture of acrylic-based products. With manufacturing, sales and distribution capabilities across EAME, The Americas and Asia Pacific, they are the energy and driving force behind some of the world’s best known branded acrylic products, which make a significant contribution to a wide range of growing sectors and geographic markets.
Since 1932 Mars has been producing much loved brands in the UK. Employing nearly 4,000 Associates across several sites in the UK, they manufacture confectionery, food, petcare and drinks products, with brands including MARS, SNICKERS, GALAXY, MALTESERS, EXTRA, ORBIT, PEDIGREE, WHISKAS, UNCLE BEN’S, DOLMIO, KLIX and FLAVIA.
Merck is a vibrant team of specialists in Healthcare, Life Science and Electronics. We share a love of science and a passion for technology.
Since 1889, Michelin has constantly innovated to enhance the mobility of people and goods. Today, it is setting the benchmark across every tire and travel-related services market, while leading a global strategy to drive sustainable, profitable growth.
Mondelēz International, Inc. is one of the world’s largest snacks companies, with global net revenues of $35 billion in 2012.
Nestlé S.A. is a Swiss multinational food and beverage company headquartered in Vevey, Switzerland. It is the largest food company in the world measured by revenues, and ranked #72 on the Fortune Global 500 in 2014.
PA Consulting Group are experts in a wide range of industries with specific expertise in energy, financial services, life sciences and healthcare, manufacturing, government and public services, defence and security, telecommunications, transport and logistics.
Pepsico is one of the world’s leading food and beverage companies serving more than 200 countries and territories around the world.
Premier Foods operates primarily in the ambient food sector which continues to be the largest sector within the total UK grocery market. Their grocery business is responsible for developing a portfolio of brands in four key categories: Flavourings & Seasonings; Cooking Sauces & Accompaniments; Quick Meals, Snacks & Soups and Ambient Desserts. Their Sweet Treats business is responsible for growing brands in the Ambient Cakes category.
From beauty and health to home and beyond, P&G’s brands make every day just a little better for our consumers in the UK and Ireland.
Reckitt Benckiser Group plc (Reckitt ) is a global consumer goods company. The Company’s operating segments comprise the Hygiene, Health and Nutrition sectors.
Schlumberger is the world’s leading supplier of technology, integrated project management and information solutions to customers working in the oil and gas industry worldwide.
The Syngenta Group is a leading global provider of agricultural science and technology, in particular seeds and crop protection products.
Synthomer is one of the world’s major suppliers of latices and speciality emulsion polymers supporting leadership positions in many market segments including coatings, construction, textiles, paper and synthetic latex gloves.
Established in 1921, Scott Bader is now a Euro 227 million global chemical company, employing over 600 people worldwide, with manufacturing sites located around the world including Europe, The Middle East, India, South Africa, Canada and South America. With the combined resource, knowledge and expertise, Scott Bader continues to be a global leader in the manufacturing of Composites, Advanced Composites, Adhesives and Speciality Polymers, offering a full range of technologies and manufacturing capabilities.
TFP Global has over 30 years’ experience working with and supplying leading companies in the areas of defence, aerospace, fuel cells and composites, to name but a few.
With more than 400 brands focused on health and wellbeing, no company touches so many people’s lives in so many different ways. The Unilever portfolio ranges from nutritionally balanced foods to indulgent ice creams, affordable soaps, luxurious shampoos and everyday household care products.

International Universities, Central Facilities and Society Partners

The Centre for Process Innovation

The Centre for Process Innovation is a UK-based technology innovation centre and part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult. We use applied knowledge in science and engineering combined with state of the art facilities to enable our clients to develop, prove, prototype and scale up the next generation of products and processes. Link:


CSIRO, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, is Australia’s national science agency and one of the largest and most diverse research agencies in the world. Link:

Diamond Light Source

Diamond Light Source is the UK’s national synchrotron science facility, located at the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Oxfordshire. By accelerating electrons to near light-speed, Diamond generates brilliant beams of light from infra-red to X-rays which are used for academic and industry research and development across a range of scientific disciplines including structural biology, physics, chemistry, materials science, engineering, earth and environmental sciences. Link:

École Supérieure of Industrial Physics and Chemistry of the City of Paris

ESPCI ParisTech is a major institution of higher education (a French “Grande École d’ingénieurs”), an internationally renowned research center, and a fertile ground of innovation for industry. Link:

Georg-August University Goettingen

The University of Göttingen regards its great research tradition and subject diversity as constituting particular strengths. Almost all academic disciplines including medicine are represented in the 13 faculties, the exception being engineering sciences. The Georg-August Universität is also distinguished by being closely integrated into a network of first-class extra-university research establishments involving, most prominently, the Göttingen Academy of Sciences, the German Primate Center, the German Aerospace Center and five Max Planck Institutes. Link:

Ian Wark Research Institute, University of South Australia

The Ian Wark Research Institute is a centre of excellence for research into chemistry and physics at interfaces and is the designated Australian Research Council (ARC) Special Research Centre for Particle and Material Interfaces. With an impressive list of research sponsors and projects in areas such as bio and polymer interfaces, colloids and nanostructures and mineral processing, The Wark aims to both develop new technologies for use in industry and improve upon existing processes. Link: Future Industries Institute – Future Industries Institute – University of South Australia (

Institut Laue-Langevin

The Institut Laue-Langevin is an international research centre based in Grenoble, France. At the leading edge of neutron science and technology, it operates one of the most intense neutron sources in the world. Link:


The ISIS pulsed neutron and muon source at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Oxfordshire is a world-leading centre for research in the physical and life sciences. It is owned and operated by the Science and Technology Facilities Council. Link:

The Leibniz-Institut für Polymerforschung

The Leibniz-Institut für Polymerforschung Dresden e. V. (Leibniz Institute of Polymer Research Dresden) is one of the largest polymer research institutions in Germany.Link:

Royal Society of Chemistry

The Royal Society of Chemistry is the world’s leading chemistry community, advancing excellence in the chemical sciences. With 49,000 members and a worldwide knowledge business that spans the globe, we are the UK’s professional body for chemical scientists; a not-for-profit organisation with 170 years of history and an international vision for the future. We promote, support and celebrate chemistry. Link:


SCI is a unique international forum where science meets business on independent, impartial ground. SCI provides the opportunity for sharing information between sectors as diverse as food and agriculture, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, environmental science and safety. Link:

Stellenbosch University

Stellenbosch University (SU) is among South Africa’s leading tertiary institutions based on research output, student pass rates and rated scientists, and is recognised internationally as an academic institution of excellence. This is confirmed by two world university rankings after SU was included in the Times Higher Education and QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) world rankings in 2012, for the second consecutive year. Link:

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

UNC-Chapel Hill, the US nation’s first public university, ranks among the world’s leading research universities. A member of the prestigious Association of American Universities, Carolina regularly ranks as the best value for academic quality in U.S. public higher education.UNC-Chapel Hill, the nation’s first public university, ranks among the world’s leading research universities. A member of the prestigious Association of American Universities, Carolina regularly ranks as the best value for academic quality in U.S. public higher education. Link:

University of Dundee

The University of Dundee, Scotland, is one of the UK’s leading universities, internationally recognised for its expertise across a range of disciplines including science