Skip to content
Open menu Close menu

Research and Partnerships

University of Bradford researchers have experience of delivering digital projects in partnership with businesses. These projects address global health problems, and inform student teaching and learning.

The University’s research themes are:

The themes link with our vision of harnessing digital technology to provide sustainable health and care solutions, and underpins the University of Bradford’s position as the lead partner in the DHEZ.

Through DHEZ (Academic), University of Bradford researchers are now building on their existing expertise. We are developing clinically driven solutions to improve the lives of people with long-term conditions. Our facilities enable us to trial new models of care, and ensure they can be scaled up by the NHS and the commerical sector. 

Our academics contribute to multi-disciplinary funding applications, providing academic support for emerging SMEs via research council funding and innovate UK initiatives, and support a thriving DHEZ community of researchers, learners, health professionals, entrepreneurs, and businesses.

Read more in our digital health research blog.

Health Care Technology Unit

This unit is used by masters and doctoral level engineering and computing researchers whose dissertation projects involve directly working with the public clinics, or the health service research areas of DHEZ (Academic) such as health promotion, end of life care, trials and evaluation, and the Technology Smart House. There will be several student cohorts each year.

The unit co-ordinates these projects, taking a liaison role with clinical leads and the Head of the Technology Smart House. The unit connects student research projects with DHEZ Academic areas in order to accelerate cutting edge digital or technological health care solutions.

Health Services Research and Health Promotion Unit

This unit is populated by researchers from the health, social and behavioural sciences; both permanent academic staff at the University of Bradford, and contract researchers employed through a range of successful grants and bids.

A key example of work in this area of health services research is the Bradford Evaluation and Trials Unit (BETU), who conduct rapid evaluations of new technology in health care on behalf of business and clinical services.

In the area of health promotion we are exploring technological solutions to enable mental health and wellbeing classes ('Recovery Colleges') to be used remotely by students who are not able to attend classes because of geographical, financial, or mental health challenges.

Digital Diagnostics Group

The Digital Diagnostics Group is a cross-faculty, multi-disciplinary group spanning interests in:

  • early diagnosis and monitoring
  • patient engagement & service improvement
  • development of innovative diagnostics

The group’s areas of expertise encompass digital pathology, biomarker discovery, biomaterials and medical devices, wireless technologies, big data and bioinformatics, robotics and motion capture and process & decision management.

Our vision is to deliver diagnostic tests and service development research programmes in a technology-enhanced and business-aware environment.  Our cross-faculty membership fosters development of digital healthcare solutions by working closely with clinicians to develop diagnostic tools that meet clinical needs. 

We provide an environment in which clinicians can work alongside researchers and industry to develop novel digital healthcare diagnostics.  Access to patients, researchers and industry in one space promotes the “clinical pull” required for effective development of new diagnostics as recommended in the MRC Molecular Pathology Review.


Optometry at the University of Bradford are always exploring ways to advance their research to improve people’s lives.  The Bradford School of Optometry and Vision Science research group are committed to developing vision and visual perception innovations in ophthalmology, optics, ocular imaging, machine vision, psychophysics, biomechanics and visual neuroscience and how digital health innovations can enhance this.  DHEZ (Academic) partnership provides the facilities to offer ‘test bed’ research services and build on commercial and spin-out of research ideas.

More information about Optometry.

Funding Support

Research and business partnerships are a core part of our offering. DHEZ Academic helps businesses work with researchers and clinicians. By doing this they create digital health products and services that are viable and relevant for patients and carers.

As a business working with a university, you have access to research funding not available elsewhere.

The University of Bradford work with industry to access appropriate research funding programmes to work with our academics, such as R&D tax relief, Innovate UK and KTP funding, and Horizon 2020. All our funding opportunities are available on the University’s business website.

Through DHEZ Ltd, you can also get support to access Angel Investment funds or the AD:VENTURE programme.



Bandar Lampung Enhanced Smart-health Services with Smart Ubiquity (BLESS U) started in April 2017 under the Newton Fund Institutional Links programme. BLESS U is a multi-disciplinary project led by Prof. Fun Hu, the academic lead of the Technology House, in collaboration with the University of Lampung in Indonesia and supported by the Bradford Council and St. Lukes Hospital in the UK, as well as the Bandung Institute Technology of Bandung and Kosasih Clinic in Indonesia.

The project gathers electrical engineers, computer scientists, health scientists, social scientists and knowledge management experts to transform current paper-based clinical services with smart technologies by exploiting Internet-of-Things, semantic web and Business Process Management Notation standards to help improve service efficiency and lessen the inequitable distribution of healthcare services between urban and rural areas in Indonesia.

Find out more about BLESS U.

Open Innovation UK, China Diagnostic Digital Pathology Network

The Diagnostic Digital Pathology network is a UK-China collaboration to support innovative, digitally enabled diagnostic histopathology training and service provision. This project is funded by a China Open Innovation Programme via the Guangzhou Development Fund.

It is led by Dr Samar Betmouni, Deputy Director of DHEZ Academic, in Collaboration with Huayin Medical Laboratory Centre in Guangzhou, China. We will establish a UK digital pathology community to promote international exchange of knowledge and expertise using a digital pathology platform which will be evaluated as part of the project. The project will provide an opportunity to co-develop training programmes for histopathology trainees and laboratory staff.

Philips Digital Pathology Solution partnership

The Faculty of Life Sciences hosts the Philips Digital Pathology Solution as part of the Bradford Pathology project which supports the application of digital pathology in teaching and learning through the Integrated Life Sciences Learning Centre; and in biomarker research.

We have an active interest in pathways to implementation of digital pathology as a diagnostic tool, and in its role in supporting automated diagnostics and delivery of precision medicine.

iGene Digital Autopsy partnership

The University of Bradford works in partnership with iGene: a leading advanced medical visualisation company to develop digital autopsy research and teaching resources.

This resource provides our students with access to emerging technology and new models of pathology service delivery, and further enhances the Faculty of Life Science’s integrated learning resources which promote interdisciplinary learning. It will also support research opportunities for big data science and computational  analysis.

NHS Digital Code4Health

The University of Bradford is a NHS Digital Code4Health Community and is supported by Digital Diagnostics and DHEZ Ltd. 

Code4Health is part of an initiative supported by NHS England and NHS Digital to enable effective use of digital tools and technology in healthcare. We have delivered coding workshops and plan to develop projects to support the development of healthcare apps, coding as a skill as part of the National Curriculum and Continuing Professional Development for healthcare professionals.

DHEZ is a partnership between

Bradford Council University of Bradford

DHEZ is part funded by

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy