Research and Development

As a materials technology company we strive to meet the needs of a rapidly changing world and continuously search for new solutions for our customers.

Research & Development is a key component of innovation-led growth. Umicore's R&D efforts involve more than 900 colleagues in 20 research and technical centres worldwide. Their main focus is on developing technologies that address key global challenges like clean mobility and resource scarcity. Each year Umicore invests some €140 million in these initiatives.

We believe in the power of partnership in finding technology solutions. To this end we foster strong relationships with universities, research institutes, customers and suppliers around the world. We also reward scientific excellence through our 'Umicore Materials Technology Award'.

Innovation is one of Umicore's values and we encourage all colleagues to find new and better ways of doing things irrespective of their role or background. To support this we reward excellence in innovation through our internal 'Umicore Innovation Award'.

Innovation Awards

Umicore holds its 'Innovation Awards' every two years. These awards are an incentive and acknowledgement for employees who step forward with their most innovative ideas.

The awards created an enormous amount of interest and enthusiasm throughout the organisation. All submitted projects are assessed by a jury comprised of both internal and external experts, who select a winning team for each category.

Five categories are defined to cover the whole range of Umicore activities:

  • Science and Technology
  • Technical Process Improvement
  • Non-Technical Process Improvement
  • New Business Development
  • Environment, Health & Safety

Umicore Materials Technology Award

Each year Umicore grants a "Umicore Materials Technology Award". In 2017 Umicore will grant this award – amounting to 10.000 euro - for a PhD degree obtained between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2016 at a recognized university (worldwide) in the following fields: 

  • Recycling / resources scarcity (related to metals)
  • Materials for catalysis
  • Materials for batteries

Umicore aims to highlight the crucial role fundamental academic research has to play in industry and society as a whole: the scientific quest for intelligent clean tech solutions can help turn our society into a sustainable one.

Umicore attaches great importance to the high scientific standards of the award and receives support from its partners (the FWO and FNRS) for selecting the laureates and warranting the excellence of the awards.

Regulations and application forms can be found on the websites of FWO and FNRS

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