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20 February 2008
An enterprising graduate has used her expertise in forensic archaeology to launch a Cardiff-based management consultancy for the legal profession.
With an increasing number of legal trials pressured to deliver more forensic evidence in court, Abigail Carter, 24, saw a gap in the market to offer a one-stop-shop style network for defence solicitors looking for independent expert forensic witnesses.
Launched with the support of Cardiff University’s Research and Commercial Division, Forensic Resources Ltd has now secured a substantial amount of funding from the Knowledge Exploitation Fund (KEF) Entrepreneurship Scholarship, and is already in the throws of expanding the network, with the potential to move into providing public advice.
Forensic Resources Ltd offers expert witness services to legal teams throughout the UK. Acting as a database of quality assured CRFP accredited expert witnesses, each member is ready to take on cases, carry out investigation, produce reports and provide testimony in courts of law.
Abigail, the founding director of Forensic Resources Ltd, graduated from Cardiff School of History and Archaeology in 2004 before embarking on a Masters in Forensic Archaeology at Bournemouth University. She said:
"The demand for expert forensic witnesses continues to grow - with no sign of slowing down. Forensic Resources’ goal is to be the number one supplier of quality assured experts nationwide – we are starting in South Wales, where we are already the preferred supplier to a number of legal teams.
"We’ve also attracted clients from across the UK and the financial help provided by the scholarship means that the company can quickly extend the network to include more areas of expertise."
Forensic Resources Ltd provides forensic experts in a wide range of fields from the application of archaeological excavation techniques to a homicide or genocide and analysis of human fingerprints to the analysis of mobile phone information and the profiling of human DNA.
Dr Catherine Bushell, Entrepreneurship Officer at Cardiff University said: "A wide variety of businesses are started by our graduates; this award will provide a substantial boost to support the growth of Abigail’s business.
"The KEF Entrepreneurship Scholarship is a great way to encourage more innovation and entrepreneurial activity among our students, and through Cardiff University has supported more than 20 graduates to start up businesses through Cardiff University."
Student Enterprise is running a series of free events throughout February and March at the University. Involving past students of the University who have gone on to build successful companies, it is the chance for budding entrepreneurs to find out first hand just how rewarding being your own boss can be.
The Knowledge Exploitation Fund’s (KEF) Entrepreneurship Scholarship Programme has been developed by the Welsh Assembly Government to support knowledge-based business start-up ideas from recent graduates (within last three years) of further and higher education institutions who wish to establish a business in Wales, and is still open to Cardiff University graduates.
Cardiff University encourages innovation and entrepreneurial activity among both staff and students, with several spin-out companies starting business based on university research each year. In addition, many students and graduates take advantage of enterprise support and advice offered at the University, resulting in many successful graduate start-up companies.
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