Research Themes

Research at USW makes a difference in the real world, changing lives and our world for the better. We're leading the way in Europe with ground-breaking work in developing sustainable energy solutions, and we're working with the biggest names in the automotive industry to develop the next generation of low-carbon power systems.

In the latest Research Excellence Framework (REF2014), half of our research was rated world-leading or internationally excellent, providing practical solutions for culture, society and the economy.  Watch our Research Impact videos

To get in touch, email Research and Innovation Services.

Sustainable environment


Recycling waste gasses 

USW’s Sustainable Environment Research Centre is developing innovative biotechnology to harness the economic benefits of clean energy. Its research is helping industry reduce energy use and become economically and environmentally sustainable


Using data to reduce energy use

Researchers developed a suite of statistical tools to analyse energy usage. Businesses significantly reduced their energy use, equating to a reduction in carbon emissions of 300,000 tonnes and energy cost savings of £43M


Improving climate forecasting 

Our Maths research has enhanced the accuracy and stability of NASA’s GEOS-5 global atmospheric model - used by weather and climate centres around the world - to benefit society, the environment, and the economy. Read more >>

Crime, Security and Justice


Improving outcomes in homicide investigations 

USW's Centre for Criminology is providing vital evidence to police forces, forensic scientists and policy makers nationally and internationally to improve homicide investigation and manage risks to justice


Building a post-war justice system in Afghanistan 

Research by USW's Centre for Criminology is helping to reform the criminal justice system in Afghanistan and supported a positive change in attitude towards women’s rights


Developing cyber security experts 

The USW National Cyber Security Academy (NCSA), the first centre of its kind in Wale, helps address the shortage of cyber security skills and develop the next generation of cyber experts

Health and Wellbeing


Helping refugees in Wales 

Collaborative work between Dr Mike Chick, from our English Research Unit, and the Welsh Refugee Council has improved refugees’ access to English Language provision, and helped refugees who have settled in Wales to achieve their potential


Tackling microbial resistance 

Researchers at USW are investigating how microbial resistance spreads and have developed new technology to improve diagnostics and inform prescribing decisions to reduce the unnecessary use of antibiotics. Read more >>


Saving our brains from dementia 

USW’s Neurovascular Research Laboratory is investigating how physical exercise can help offset neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Dementia, leading to benefits for individuals, their families and the healthcare system

Creative Industries


Digital stories transform policies

USW's George Ewart Evans Centre for Storytelling's work with Welsh Women's Aid has transformed training, policy and service provision for women and children in Wales who have suffered domestic violence


Bringing lost history to life

The Music, Performance and Media Research Group's work on the ‘lost history’ of popular music in Merthyr Tydfil has improved understanding of the important past that Merthyr Tydfil played in the development on popular music in Wales


Informing policy and investment for creative industries 

Research by the Centre for Media and Culture in Small Nations has informed national policy development as well as investment and support strategies for media provision and cultural and creative organisations in Wales