Aspire Lecturers appointed in partnership with UCL and RNOH

Thursday 15th August marked a significant event in the field of research for the benefit of people paralysed by Spinal Cord Injury (primarily) and other disabilities. Aspire hosted some of the most senior academic staff from UCL (University College London) and the Chairman and Chief Executive of the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital (RNOH) for the official signing ceremony of the agreement to appoint three new Aspire Lecturers/Senior Lecturers.

Rob Hurd, RNOH Chief Executive said: “We are delighted to support these appointments which will strengthen our partnership with UCL and Aspire and will progress research with our patients”.

When Aspire was first established as a charity in 1983 it was registered, and still is, with the official name of the Association of Spinal Injury Research, Rehabilitation and Reintegration. They established the first ever Professorial Chair in Disability and Technology in the Institute of Orthopaedics & Musculoskeletal Science, UCL, in the grounds of the RNOH, in 1996. Their research was focused on finding cost effective technologies that can improve the independence and quality of life for spinal cord injured people and other disabled people. The research capacity grew over the years and they set up the Aspire Centre for Disability Science in 2005.

Aspire have recently been working with UCL and RNOH to create a new and innovative approach to attracting academic talent through the creation of three Lecturer/Senior Lecturer posts that will be encouraged to work cross-faculty (between the UCL School of Medical Sciences and UCL Engineering) to get the best out of the resources available at UCL.

The new Lecturers, who will be taking up their roles in Autumn this year, will be undertaking research in the areas of engineering rehabilitation and assistive technology with an added focus on investigating the effects of ageing with a spinal cord injury. It is hoped that the research will deliver practical outcomes for the benefit of spinal cord injured people in the not too distant future.

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