Who is Institute of Cancer Research?

The Institute of Cancer Research, London, is one of the world’s most influential cancer research institutes, with an outstanding record of achievement dating back more than 100 years. As well as being as world-class research institute, the ICR is a higher education institution and a college of the University of London. The ICR has charitable status and relies on support from partner organisations, charities, donors and the general public.

Why Cisilion?

Terry Woolfries - Technical Services Manager

“Cisilion's Business Transformation process provided Institute of Cancer Research with a technology roadmap that helps the IT Team deliver a number of key network upgrade projects aligned to the strategic research objectives of the organisation."


The Institute of Cancer Research’s mission is to relieve human suffering by pursuing excellence in the fight against cancer. One of the underlying strategies that support this mission was investing in world class facilities and infrastructure to deliver and support state of the art research facilities. Cisilion provided ICR a business transformation service, which consisted of several workshops around how to improve research. The findings were combined with infrastructure mapping, to ensure ICR could align their strategy and business objectives to gain business benefits.


The ICRs network infrastructure had evolved over time based on tactical project based requirements. The ICR wanted to ensure that the budget they had available for IT infrastructure changes was invested in strategic, business aligned initiatives which would support the long term scientific research objectives. In order to achieve this, the ICR needed a process that would allow their IT team to better engage with the scientific user communities to ensure all IT and business requirements were factored into the IT strategy and subsequent technology investments.


ICR selected to partner with Cisilion to deliver the Business Transformation service. The consultative process began with a series of workshops with different groups of ICRs research scientists providing information about the nature of their research, how they perform that research now and how they saw their research developing. The workshops also allowed the scientists to convey the challenges they had and how they felt that IT could help address these challenges. The workshops highlighted areas such as improving and impacting research through collaboration and communication with other scientists, and challenges around experimental processing time and rapidly increasing experimental data sets. An infrastructure capability review and discovery was carried out so that a clear understanding of the capabilities of the current infrastructure were obtained, together with the current challenges and future aspirations.


The Business Transformation process brought the IT and scientific communities closer together so a clearer understanding of the objectives and challenges faced by each other was obtained. The strategy and business drivers were understood by all and the IT networking infrastructure upgrade programme had been aligned to deliver tangible business benefits which could be measured against this. The process also allowed Cisilion to understand the scientific challenges that the ICR face and to act as a technology partner and advisor, supporting ICRs mission.