The University of Southampton (Southampton), one of the leading universities in Britain, was founded in 1952 and is a member of the prestigious Russell Group of UK Universities. Southampton is an excellent venue for conducting cutting-edge research and for providing high quality education and has been ranked 96th  in the 2019 QS World University Rankings. It has been ranked 8th in the UK for research and has 97% of its research environment rated as world leading or internationally excellent (Research Excellence Framework, 2014). It has more than 17,100 undergraduate and 7,500 postgraduate students from over 140 different countries. In 2016/17 alone Southampton has received over €150M in research grants and contracts, including over €17M from the European Commission. Southampton has a successful track record of industrial collaborations and is at the centre of a cluster of local high technology companies. It has an enviable track record in the generation of patentable work, with a portfolio of over 250 patents. To ensure the impact of its research projects, University of Southampton’s Research & Innovation Services (R&IS) is responsible for professional protection of IP and supporting commercial development with industry. R&IS has had considerable success, as a world-leading business incubator, and has launched 28 spin-out companies since 2000. Southampton has also a strong record of accomplishment of working in European projects, especially within the Framework Programme. The EC 7th FP7 Monitoring Report ranked Southampton 15th out of all higher and secondary education organisations for number of participations during 2007-2013. Throughout the FP7 Southampton received over €125M in research grants and was involved in 318 projects, including 5 SPACE Collaborative Projects. Since the start of H2020 Southampton has been awarded 153 grants worth over €102M (EC Participant Portal).

The Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences includes the schools of Chemistry, Engineering, Electronics and Computer Science, Physics and Astronomy, and the Zepler Institute for Photonics and Nanoelectronics, incorporating the Optoelectronics Research Centre. In the Guardian University Guide 2019, Electronics and Electrical Engineering is 2nd in the UK in its subject while Physics and Astronomy was ranked 6th. Chemistry is 8th in the UK for research power and 6th for research intensity, while both General Engineering and Electrical and Electronic Engineering were ranked 1st in the UK for research power (Research Excellence Framework 2014). 100% of Computer Science research impact is worldleading or internationally excellent (Research Excellence Framework 2014). FEPS has a strong background working on international research projects, including 109 H2020 projects worth in excess of €61M.