News story

Innovate UK: first Council announced

Members will support Innovate UK operations, champion business-led innovation and help secure the success of UK Research and Innovation.

The Innovate UK stand at Innovate 2017 - future, growth, global

The Innovate UK stand at Innovate 2017 - future, growth, global.

Innovate UK has announced the members of its first Council, who will advise and make decisions on Innovate UK’s operations as it becomes part of UK Research and Innovation.

With a specific focus on innovation, they will:

  • provide leadership in their field of activity, including prioritising budgets within their delegated remits and and developing delivery plans
  • ensure a pipeline of skilled specialists and other roles that are essential to the sustainability of the UK’s research and innovation capacity
  • engage with the innovation and business community to develop ideas, raise awareness and share strategic outputs
  • encourage and facilitate collaborative work across the 9 Councils to build strategic relationships

Range of expertise and experience

The members are:

  • Sir Harpal Kumar, who will serve as Senior Independent Member through his role as UK Research and Innovation’s Innovation Champion and work closely with the board
  • Dr Arnab Basu MBE, Chief Executive, Kromek Group plc
  • Baroness Brown of Cambridge DBE FREng FRS (Julia King)
  • Professor Juliet Davenport OBE, Chief Executive, Good Energy
  • Dr John Fingleton, Chief Executive, Fingleton Associates
  • Priya Guha, Ecosystem General Manager, RocketSpace UK
  • Dr Elaine Jones, Vice President, Pfizer Ventures
  • Professor John Latham, Vice-Chancellor of Coventry University
  • Sir William Sargent, Chief Executive, Framestore
  • Stephen Welton, Chief Executive, Business Growth Fund

Innovate UK’s funding is awarded to businesses of different sizes across a wide range of industries, and the Council’s membership reflects that.

They have a range of expertise and experience in research and innovation across business, entrepreneurship, investment, technology development, economics and business impact evaluation, with different characteristics and professional backgrounds.

Champions of business-led innovation

Chief Executive of Innovate UK, Dr Ruth McKernan said:

As UK Research and Innovation begins its work, the Council of Innovate UK will have a vital role to play. They will champion the vital role that business-led innovation and the commercialisation of research play in driving economic growth and increasing productivity.

The important duties of the Council means that we need people who are up to the task. It’s fantastic that the role has attracted people of such high calibre from a diverse range of backgrounds. We look forward to them taking on the task with enthusiasm and passion.

The Council replaces Innovate UK’s governing board. Members will serve between one and 3 years.

Published 23 March 2018