Manchester Metropolitan University

Greater Manchester Cyber Foundry

The Greater Manchester Cyber Foundry is a cyber security scheme launched to protect Greater Manchester's companies against malicious computer attacks.

Greater Manchester Cyber Foundry is the £6million cyber security scheme that will help to protect Greater Manchester's small and medium-sized companies against malicious computer attacks.

Cyber attacks cost the region's businesses £860million a year, as estimated by the LLoyds City Risk Register, and with Greater Manchester's digital aspirations continuing to grow, cyber reliance becomes ever-more important. To combat these threats, universities in the region, led by Manchester Metropolitan University, will join forces in an initiative known as the GM Cyber Foundry, which will apply research in cyber security to create new products and services for SMEs.

It is vitally important for the region to protect its vibrant digital and creative sector, which generates more than £3billion in economic output each year, and to ensure that it can operate securely. Manchester is growing as a centre for digital excellence, as evidenced by the opening of a Government Communications Agency site (GCHQ) in the city next year.

We are now accepting applications for our workshops, which focus on business support for cyber security.

Register your interest

What to expect on the programme

You'll attend two workshops and complete a series of online learning modules in your own time.

Once you’ve completed the workshops and modules, you’ll usually have a one-to-one action planning and feedback session with a member of our team.

Workshop One

During this full-day workshop, we typically cover the following topics:

  • Our online learning platform, Open Learning.
  • Knowledge session: Cyber innovation for growth.
  • Knowledge session: Cyber security/protection.
  • How to develop a Business Model Canvas for your business.

Online Learning Modules

During the programme, you’ll work through a series of modules using Open Learning. Each module aims to help you understand the role of cyber security and your business.

In your own time, you’ll complete each section and an associated survey. We’ll analyse your responses and provide a report with feedback and suggestions to move forwards.

The modules:

  • Cyber Essentials: You’ll assess where your business currently lies in defending your critical digital assets.
  • Innovation Audit: You’ll assess the innovation that currently exists in your business.
  • Absorptive Capacity Analysis: You’ll identify your ability to embed innovation in your business.
  • Driving Forces: You’ll identify the driving forces shaping the environment your business operates within.

We suggest allowing at least 30 minutes for each module.

Workshop Two

During this full-day workshop, you’ll use the information you supplied in the Driving Forces module to develop an Intuitive Logics model.

Working in groups, you’ll explore future business scenarios that use cyber security research and innovation.

We’ll create a report with the collective knowledge and scenarios, to help you further develop your business ideas.

One-to-one Session

This one-to-one session is an opportunity for you to develop an action plan based on the tasks you’ve completed during the programme.

We suggest allowing one to three hours for this session.

Possible projects

A selection of such projects include:

  • improving cyber security in blockchain and Internet of Things (IoT) applications
  • enhancing security of cyber physical systems
  • increasing encryption efficiency
  • increasing cyber threat intelligence in systems
  • improving ‘cyber hygiene’ to maintain online security
  • improving the design of security systems to help users

Contact us

Questions about the Greater Manchester Cyber Foundry programme?

For more information, please get in touch with: 

Peter Smith

Business Advisor - ERDF Projects, Centre for Enterprise

Tel: +44 (0)161 247 6623 / +44 (0)7879 486 656

Email: or

Visit for more details.