About The Birmingham Project

Enhance your skills, discover your strengths, and develop your confidence.

The Birmingham Project is an intensive and exciting two-week challenge that takes place on the Birmingham campus in the last two weeks of semester two in June. This employer-endorsed programme is exclusively for first years, and offers you the unique opportunity to work in small groups with students from across the institution.

You will work on a collaborative project to explore key social and environmental issues to develop an innovative business solution. We equip you with the training and skills to do this, and support you in navigating working within a newly formed team.

This is a unique opportunity to Birmingham students. Take the opportunity to broaden your network, develop strong team working and enterprising skills, and give yourself distinctive and quality experiences to talk about in job or further study applications. When you complete the Birmingham Project, it will be recorded on your enhanced transcript.

Challenge yourself!

Choose a challenge theme that appeals to you

We have six challenges to choose from; an industry professional and a team of academics support each challenge. 

You should choose a challenge theme (below) that speaks to you and your interests. There is no prior experience necessary to sign up.


The themes on the Birmingham Project are broad to encourage innovation as part of the challenges you are set. The themes are topical and mirror challenges faced in society.

To help you choose your preferred theme, we have listed some challenges from past Birmingham Projects (below). There is no prior knowledge or research needed before you undertake the Birmingham Project. 

You do not have to take a theme aligned to your degree programme; we encourage students to choose a theme that interests them. 

You are not sent your challenge until your first day, so that everyone starts the Birmingham Project together.

Shaping Global Society (Supported by PwC)

  • How can we get decision-makers to take environmental issues more seriously?
  • How can technology be used to tackle fake news?
  • How can charities help to promote a more equal society?

Exploring Technology and Innovations (Supported by IBM)

  • How can Artificial Intelligence be used for the good of society?
  • How can social media support local businesses in Birmingham?
  • How can immersive and wearable technology transform the way we work?

Developing the Future of Transport (Supported by Transport for West Midlands)

  • How can we develop a vision for future transport which creates cities for people, not cars?
  • How can transport be used to encourage a healthy region?
  • How can cycling become a viable option for commuters in Birmingham?

Celebrating Arts and Culture (Supported by Lapworth Museum of Geology)

  • Do people care about public art?
  • How can we use cultural heritage to enhance the image of Birmingham?
  • How can the arts improve health and wellbeing in Birmingham?

Responsible Business (Supported by Lloyds Banking Group)

  • How can businesses help the homeless?
  • How can savers ensure their money is used responsibly?
  • How can consumers ensure their products are slave free?

Developing Community (Supported by TBC)

  • How can UoB help to make a sustainable local community
  • How can UoB help to make an ‘inclusive’ local community?
  • How can UoB help to make a literacy loving local community? 

The challenges above are not this year’s challenge questions; they are illustrative examples from previous years.

Additional information

What does the Birmingham Project involve?

The Birmingham Project is an in-person collaborative project for registered first-year undergraduates that will take place on the Birmingham campus.

On the first day you will be welcomed into your team and your challenge question will be revealed.

Over the course of the two weeks, you will work collaboratively with your team to develop a digital solution, and on the final day you will give an assessed presentation to your peers, industry professionals, and your academic support team.

If you haven’t had presentation experience – don’t worry - we will equip you with the skills to create and deliver a strong presentation.

A winning team from each theme will be selected by the industry partner and academic leads.

A prize will be awarded from each industry partner and delivered on Friday 24 June.

Previous prizes have included visits to the industry partners’ organisations for lunch and an opportunity to explore their business areas from key experts and recruiters.

Prizes TBC for June 2022.

Your skills training programme

We provide you with a suite of in-person and online training activities across the two weeks, to ensure you are supported every step of the way. The training includes:

  • Identifying your strengths within a team
  • Effective team working within a project– this will be delivered by one of our employer partners
  • Research skills
  • Idea generation
  • Designing digital assets
  • Presentation skills
  • Intellectual property.

Project assessment

The project is assessed through a group presentation (50%) and a peer evaluation (50%). The assessment will determine whether you receive a pass or fail award.

N.B. The programme does not bear any credits and therefore will not contribute towards your degree classification.

As well as the skill development side, it is also an enjoyable experience! 100% of respondents in last year’s project told us they would recommend the Birmingham Project to a friend.

When does it take place and what hours will it be?

Monday 13 June to Thursday 23 June 2022.

The winners of each theme will receive a prize from their industry partner; this prize will take place on Friday 24 June.

Attendance on Monday 13 June and Thursday 23 June (09:00 – 16:00 both days) is compulsory to complete the project.

The remaining days and timings will be agreed with your group and Teaching Assistant. You will be expected to work around six hours per day on the project with your group (this varies depending on the nature of your project). 

Places are limited and we ask that you only enrol if you are able fully commit to the programme.

Enrolment process

The Birmingham Project is only for registered first-year undergraduate students (Birmingham campus).

  • Please only enrol if you are able to fully commit to the programme (details above).
  • There are a limited number of spaces on the project and places will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Once the maximum number of participants has been reached, students may be asked to join a waiting list.

Birmingham Scholar students’ enrolment

If you are a first year undergraduate Birmingham Scholar student, you will be granted early access to enrolment between Monday 21 March 2022 and Sunday 10 April 2022. 


All first year undergraduate students’ enrolment

The enrolment period for all first year undergraduate students will open on Monday 11 April 2022.

Enrol now  


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