Invited Speakers

The symposium will feature a number of prominent keynote speakers including the following.

Rajeeb Dey

CEO of & Co-Founder of StartUp Britain
"Entrepreneurship is key for the UK"
Full Biog

Rajeeb graduated in 2008 with First Class Honours in Economics & Management from the University of Oxford. He is the Founder/CEO of, a portal that connects students and graduates to work placements in start-ups & SMEs and was named the "02 X Young Entrepreneur of the Year" in 2009. Rajeeb is also the Co-Founder of StartUp Britain," a campaign supported by HM Government which aims to celebrate, inspire and accelerate entrepreneurship in the UK which was launched in March 2011 by the Prime Minister.

Rajeeb will be launching InnovationKT's new Entrepreneurship strand. His keynote will introduce new strategies behind working partnerships with industry and recent graduates, discussing Knowledge Transfer Partnerships as well as hosting a vibrant panel on entrepreneurship.

Kelvin Pitman

Director of Open Innovation (recently retired)
Crown Packaging UL PLC
"Working with Open Innovation Intermediaries"

Kelvin Pitman recently retired as Director of Open Innovation for Crown working closely with Cambridge University Institute for Manufacturing, IXC, Industrial Research Institute (USA), NESTA and several other organisations to exploring how Crown Technology could exploit Open Innovation in a B2B situation.

His career started after obtaining an honours degree in Polymer and Chemical Technology in 1974 when he joined Metalbox R&D in the UK. He progressed to Senior Scientist before taking on roles as Product Manager for beverage closures; then Commercial Office manager covering plastic closures for food, pharmaceuticals, automotive and household products. Subsequently he became Market Development Manager for PET bottles and beverage closures at divisional level.

In 1988 he accepted a position as Licensing Manager for Crown Obrist, a subsidiary of Crown Holdings in Switzerland, expanding their beverage closure production technology to Belgium, Germany and the USA. Followed a period as Corporate Customer Manager he became Technical Director responsible for quality, R&D, production, customer technical service and purchasing.

When Crown acquired Caurnaud Metalbox in 1996, Kelvin accepted the role of Global Closure Development Director, managing teams in the USA, UK and Switzerland. More recently, following a period as Director of Global Licensing, Kelvin took up his final role as Director of Open Innovation

Caroline Bishop

Managing Director, IXC UK Ltd
"Working with Open Innovation Intermediaries"

Following an early career with the NHS, Caroline subsequently spent 20 years at the University of Birmingham, in a variety of progressively challenging roles all focused on finding innovative new ways of engaging the University with the private and public sectors and raising income through knowledge exchange.

Highlights include setting up the School of Public Policy's MBA programme in Hong Kong and building the University’s business engagement strategy that saw the establishment of a team of business engagement staff that raised £32.5 million of new funding over the five years between 2001 and 2006. Especially important in this period was the creation of the Medici idea and the establishment in 2002 of a five-university partnership across the East and West Midlands to deliver training in technology transfer to medical scientists. Caroline subsequently led the bid that won £2 million from the Universities funding body (HEFCE) to train and develop medical scientists to engage more effectively in business. Medici was cited by HEFCE as an exemplar of innovation and good practice in 2007 and continues to provide service today.

In 2006 Caroline secured £3.6 million of grant funding for the establishment of IXC UK and changed direction in her career to become Director of Operations for this new start up operation of the University of Birmingham. Six years on IXC UK has now spun out from the University and is in its fourth independent trading year and Caroline has become the company’s Managing Director.

IXC UK Ltd is designed to offer an alternative and more effective way to enable corporates, SMEs and Universities to collaborate and innovate. It is a very exciting arena in which to work and a huge challenge, which Caroline is relishing. Linking Jaguar LandRover with a small company in the Aerospace sector to enable Jaguar to develop a new hybrid engine based around gas turbines as opposed to the current industry approach with electric is a good example of what IXC enables its clients to do.

The client base of IXC includes amongst others well known names such as, Crown Packaging, Jaguar Land Rover, Abbott Pharmaceuticals, Cadbury's, Smith and Nephew, Spriax Sacro, Kraft, PepsiCo, Dow Chemicals and MARS. Smaller companies such as Molecular Products, Phase Vision, Geotechnical Instruments, Cochlea and MiniFab also feature. The universities of La Trobe, Monash, Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester Metropolitan, Wolverhampton and Northumbria feature in the University client base whilst the Smith Family Foundation exemplify work in the social enterprise field and public sector.

Dr. Piero P.Bonissone

Chief Scientist, Coolidge Fellow
General Electric Global Research, USA
"Soft Computing in Prognostics and Health Management (PHM) Applications"

A Chief Scientist at GE Global Research, Dr. Bonissone has been a pioneer in the field of fuzzy logic, AI, soft computing, and approximate reasoning systems applications since 1979. His current interests are the development of multi-criteria decision making systems for PHM and the automation of intelligent systems lifecycle to create, deploy, and maintain SC-based systems, providing customized performance while adapting to avoid obsolescence.

He is a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), of the International Fuzzy Systems Association (IFSA), and a Coolidge Fellow at GE Global Research. He is the recipient of the 2012 Fuzzy Systems Pioneer Award from the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society. Since 2010, he is the President of the Scientific Committee of the European Centre of Soft Computing. In 2008 he received the II Cajastur International Prize for Soft Computing from the European Centre of Soft Computing. In 2005 he received the Meritorious Service Award from the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society. He has received two Dushman Awards from GE Global Research. He served as Editor in Chief of the International Journal of Approximate Reasoning for 13 years. He is in the editorial board of five technical journals and is Editor-at-Large of the IEEE Computational Intelligence Magazine. He has co-edited six books and has over 150 publications in refereed journals, book chapters, and conference proceedings, with an H-Index of 27 (by Google Scholar). He received 61 patents issued from the US Patent Office (plus 50 pending patents). From 1982 until 2005 he has been an Adjunct Professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, in Troy NY, where he has supervised 5 PhD theses and 33 Master theses. He has co-chaired 12 scientific conferences and symposia focused on Multi-Criteria Decision-Making, Fuzzy sets, Diagnostics, Prognostics, and Uncertainty Management in AI. Dr. Bonissone is very active in the IEEE, where is has been a member of the Fellow Evaluation Committee from 2007 to 2009. In 2002, while serving as President of the IEEE Neural Networks Society (now CIS) he was also a member of the IEEE Technical Board Activities (TAB). He has been an Executive Committee member of NNC/NNS/CIS society since 1993 and an IEEE CIS Distinguished Lecturer since 2004.

Mike Smith

Pro-Vice Chancellor Research
Sheffield Hallam University, UK
"Co-Creation of Innovation"
Prof Mike Smith

Professor Mike Smith has a long experience of working in the University, NHS and commercial sectors and has a wide network of international links. Among his previous posts, he was dean of research for the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry, Psychology and Health at the University of Leeds; director of R&D for the Leeds Teaching Hospitals Trust; chair of medical physics and head of the University and NHS Departments of Medical Physics at the University of Leeds and Leeds Acute Hospitals; director of medical physics and clinical engineering at Guys Hospital and the University of London as well as being medical scientist at the University of Edinburgh.

Mike also has a long track record in research, supporting educational developments as well as commercialising research and innovations. This includes publishing patents, licensing research developments, forming start-up and spin-out companies and creating private sector vehicles to commercialise research output.

He holds a number of non-executive directorships in the commercial and NHS sectors. In addition, Mike has over 20 years experience of serving on major professional and governmental national committees, contributing at a national level on policy and funding issues. Examples include the HEFCE Research Assessment Exercise, MRC Medical Advisory Board, NHS Central Research and Development Committee, DTI Foresight Taskforces on Biotechnology, Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices and president of the British Institute of Radiology in its Centenary Year. While Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research and Enterprise at the University of Teesside, he has played a major role, working with the Regional Development Agency in putting together the Digital City Project and securing a £10m building for the University to support this initiative.

Anne Snowdon

Professor, Management Science
Odette School of Business, University of Windsor, Canada
International Centre for Health Innovation, Richard Ivey School of Business
"Issues in International Health Innovation"
Ass Prof Anne Snowdon

Dr. Anne Snowdon is Chair of the International Centre for Health Innovation at the Richard Ivey School of Business. Located within The University of Western Ontario in Canada, the Centre’s mandate is to build health system leadership capacity to support and drive innovation adoption of technologies, systems and processes that our health systems need in order to be sustainable.

Dr. Snowdon is an Adjunct Faculty member at Ivey and holds an Adjunct appointment in the School of Nursing at McGill University in Montreal. She is also a Professor at the Odette School of Business and is cross-appointed to the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Windsor.

Dr. Snowdon holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from The University of Western Ontario, a Master of Science from McGill University and a PhD in Nursing from the University of Michigan. She is a Fulbright Scholar and was awarded the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Doctoral Fellowship for her research on parenting during childhood hospitalization. Dr. Snowdon is also the Theme Coordinator for Automotive Health and Safety for Canada’s automotive research program, AUTO21 Network of Centres of Excellence, and has commercialized innovative new safety seat products for occupants in vehicles as a result of this research program.

In addition to her expertise in health system leadership and innovation, Dr. Snowdon’s research also looks at the role of engaged consumers as agents of change and reform to health systems.

Jim Roach

Professor & Dean, School of Design, Engineering and Computing
Bournemouth University

"Industry engagement: barriers and how to overcome them"
Jim Roach

Abstract provided below

Professor Jim Roach took up his post of Dean of the School of Design, Engineering and Computing in September 2008 having previously served as Deputy Dean (Education) in the School.

Professor Roach has great experience of working with Industry and Commerce linking with Academia. In 2001 Professor Roach was awarded one of only twelve National Business Fellowships in recognition of the collaborative work undertaken between the University and Industry. Through his work with Industry over twenty collaborative programmes (Teaching Company Schemes now Knowledge Transfer Partnerships) have been carried out. These have resulted in many new products and improved processes for local companies. Research interests are in simulation and modelling of electronic circuits, programmable electronics, electronic product generation, protecting Design Rights and Intellectual Property and the management and development of engineering innovation. Currently Professor Roach is collaborating with a local company developing an intelligent temperature monitoring instrument for use in the power industry.

Professor Roach has a strong connection with the Royal School of Signals, Blandford and was instrumental in obtaining accreditation for a number of military courses allowing them to attract civilian qualifications. The MSc in Communications and Information Systems Management has run since 1999 and this has been followed by a BSc(Hons) Telecommunication Systems Engineering and most recently a FdSc Management of Military Information Systems and a FdSc in Communications Systems engineering.


“Industry engagement: barriers and how to overcome them.”

This presentation covers the research we have done to identify the problems industry face when trying to interact with the University. The findings of focus groups and face to face interviews with companies that have an existing relationship with the University and those companies that have no relationship with the University but would like to engage.  Discussion will enquire what sort of interactions does the University want and how is it promoting them. Then from our findings we propose a “tool kit” for Universities to build successful relationships with Industry.