Plymouth Pioneers

We are committed to developing solutions to the planet's most challenging issues. Our pioneering spirit runs deep in the quest for a better tomorrow.


Noun –  a person who is among the first to explore a new area

Verb – develop or be the first to use or apply a new method, area of knowledge, or activity

The city of Plymouth has a rich history of exploration. Our coastal location provides a gateway to the world from which many important pioneers including Drake, Cook, Darwin, Scott, Chichester and, more recently, climate activist Greta Thunberg, have departed on quests for discovery or new beginnings.

Our ongoing campaign will tell the modern-day story of how the University of Plymouth has established itself as an international pioneer in research, teaching and sustainability practices. It charts our quest to understand the challenges faced by the environment and our passion to advance thinking on issues of vital importance such as, marine litter and conservation, climate change, renewable energies, ageing populations and natural hazards. Our pioneering spirit has allowed us to identify – novel ways of studying the issues, creative approaches to understanding their causes, and innovative solutions to remedy global problems.

At the University of Plymouth, we have pioneered collaborations between natural and social scientists in fields including plastic pollution, soil erosion, coastal processes, earthquakes, ocean engineering, volcanoes, health inequalities and the development of smart cities, and our research directly informs and shapes the implementation of regional, national and international policies.