A brief history of IRG, CBR and CENTRIM
In the mid-1980s, a group of leading academics in the University of Brighton Business School, UK, decided that research in the field of innovation was both important and exciting enough to warrant their full time attention.
In 1987, out of the pioneering Innovation Research Group (IRG) at the University of Brighton, the Centre for Business Research (CBR) was formed, with innovation management as the main focus of its research. Founding members included Professors Howard Rush and John Bessant, both of whom already had significant track records in the field of innovation management. By the 1990s, it was decided to change our name from CBR to CENTRIM — the Centre for Research in Innovation Management. As they say in the UK, we do “exactly what it says on the tin”.
Our reputation as a global leading authority on innovation management continues to grow, and we have an impressive portfolio. Major projects such as the Complex Product Systems (CoPS) Innovation Centre, an ESRC-funded multi-million pound project that ran for ten years until 2006, are pivotal to our growth in reputation and knowledge.
Our collaborations, over the years, with the University of Sussex Science Policy Research Unit — more recently Science and Technology Policy Research (SPRU) — were so great that the two groups won funding from the Joint Infrastructure Fund (JIF) in order to build a shared accommodation. The result, the Freeman Centre, was opened by Lord Sainsbury in 2003. This state of the art building was specifically designed to create a research environment in which CENTRIM and SPRU can flourish.
CENTRIM is now an internationally-recognised research centre, integrated with Brighton Business School. Our applied research and consultancy activities explore with firms contemporary innovation management issues and technological challenges.