Advocacy Committee

The Advocacy Committee represents the PraxisAuril membership and our organisation's values on matters affecting the knowledge exchange and technology transfer profession. We do this by responding to government and other sector consultations, by engaging with policy makers and influencers at a national and regional level, and by proactively voicing opinion through publications, events and online media. The Committee is one of the largest of PraxisAuril's practitioner committees as it is important for us to represent a broad mix of our membership organisations and their research commercialisation cultures.

The PraxisAuril office contact for the Advocacy Committee team is Tamsin Mann.

Alisdair Aldous
Director of Knowledge Exchange, University of the Arts London

My academic background is in critical theory, particularly the practices of deconstruction, and this has given me a great set of tools for understanding and interrogating a range of other disciplines, as well as a fascination with language, culture and the politics of structure.

I am particularly interested in how theoretical models for change can be implemented through creative practices, and the tangible impacts that this can achieve.

In addition to these academic interests, I also have a strong interest in sound and music, film, dance, and fine art (from the 15th to the 21st Century), but also enjoy travelling, skiing, camping and hill-walking.

Driven by many of these interests, I have worked as a 'creative' consultant on major regeneration projects; worked directly with fine art and digital media practitioners to help professionalise and enhance their practices; and finally, moved into the higher education sector, where I have provided Executive-level strategic intelligence services, and worked as a knowledge transfer professional, developing collaborative R&D projects with industry partners.

My current role at University of the Arts London involves providing all of our Colleges with the information and support they require to strategically develop their research and enterprise collaborations, and to help enhance the networks of relevant partners that they are engaging with.

Carole Barron
Director of Knowledge Exchange & Innovation, University of Kent

Carole is Director of Innovation and Enterprise at the University of Kent where she leads the strategic growth of innovation, enterprise and knowledge exchange. Carole has over 20 years’ experience of businesses and stakeholder engagement and has a broad portfolio. This covers, business development; collaborative partnerships; commercialisation of the University’s intellectual and knowledge expertise; consultancy; training and professional development; student enterprise and incubation and supporting SMEs. The role also includes regional economic impact, place making and working closely with the Local Enterprise Partnership.

Carole is a Board member of several businesses and sits on numerous local and regional partnership boards including President of the Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce, Immediate Past Chair of AURIL (Association for Research & Industry Links) and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Leadership Foundation.

Carole has a particular interest in supporting women in enterprise having recently launched a new Programme to support women in the workplace and is a Leadership Foundation Aurora Role Model.

Michael Bath RTTP
Technology Transfer Manager, Durham University

Michael is past Chair of the PraxisAuril Conference Committee. He has worked in Technology Transfer since September 1999. Currently employed by Durham University, he previously worked for five years at RTC North (an independent TT company)Prior to RTC North, he worked for twelve years in various manufacturing and materials management roles, mainly at Rolls-Royce.

Recent work includes the creation of Applied Graphene Materials (AGM) PLC - originally Durham Graphene Science Ltd (DGS). Alongside the academic inventor, Michael served on the Board of Directors for three years, building the business from scratch, securing V.C. investments and winning multiple grants, awards and contracts. AGM floated on AIM in 2013 and now employs 34 staff.

Dr. George Baxter
CEO, Edinburgh Innovations Limited

George Baxter took up the post at Edinburgh Research & Innovation (ERI) on 24 October 2016.
Dr Baxter joined ERI from the University of Nottingham, where he was Director of Research and Enterprise and Director of Business Engagement and Innovation Services.
He has brought a wealth of experience to the role, having worked for the University of Salford, the Northwest Regional Development Agency and AstraZeneca Speciality Chemicals.

Richard Brooks
Co founder - Director, FD Solutions

Since co-founding FD Solutions with Malcolm Durham in the early 1990s Richard has developed from a flexible FD to various businesses, to overseeing the growth of the firm as the leading provider of flexible Director services. In particular he has developed and implemented innovative approaches to financing and management information systems.

Board member of the Bio Industry Association Finance and Taxation Committee. Guest lecturer and presenter for Biopioneer events and on entrepreneurship workshops for scientists and engineers around the globe.

He has developed and implemented innovative approaches to financing and management information systems. Chairman of widely-acclaimed The People’s Supermarket. Member of the advisory board of the London Chamber Orchestra. FD of Cellcentric, a dominant discovery platform in epigenetics.

Richard gained a BCom from Edinburgh University in 1981 and qualified as a CA at Ernst & Whinney in 1984. Prior to joining FD Solutions, Richard had finance director roles with Samuelson Communications and Laserpoint Communications. Specialist sectors include technology start-ups, food, retail, manufacturing and not-for-profit.

Richard’s achievements since the inception of FD Solutions include: helping an entrepreneur turnaround his manufacturing business from a loss-making operation to £35m turnover in four years. Establish a VC-backed invoice discounting operation with turnover of £100m and a back office of only 30, by designing and implementing a system based on Systems Union Sun. An NHS organisation to treble in size by negotiating an outsourcing contract with the Department of Health. A small specialist engineering manufacturer turnaround its business from loss making to profitable, completing a sale and buyback, followed a few years later by a further sale to a European manufacturer.

Tim Brundle
Director of Research and Innovation, Ulster University

Timothy Brundle is Director of Innovation at the University of Ulster. He is responsible for the University’s commercial output and is the CEO of Innovation Ulster Ltd, Ulster’s award-winning knowledge venturing and investment company. Timothy has fifteen years experience in both the successful commercialisation of technology and in business and economic development. His background in the private and academic sectors is complemented by success in the start up, growth and sale of technology companies, in the management of public to private sector transition and in strategic change management. He is an angel investor and an experienced Director of both young companies and mature public Institutions. Timothy is a Board member of the economic development agency for Northern Ireland, Invest NI, and a Panel Member of MATRIX, Northern Ireland's science-industry advisory council.

Dr. Alison Campbell OBE RTTP
Director, Knowledge Transfer Ireland, Knowledge Transfer Ireland

Dr Alison Campbell is Director of Knowledge Transfer Ireland (KTI), based at Enterprise Ireland. KTI is the national office, responsible for the promotion, development and management of Ireland’s knowledge transfer system. Alison has over 20 years working at the academic-industry interface in industry and within the research sector, and has led research commercialisation as MD of King’s College London Business Ltd and CEO of the UK Medical Research Council Technology Ltd. She is a founder of the global Alliance of Technology Transfer Professionals (ATTP) and Chair of Governance. She currently chairs the AUTM International Advocacy Committee and is a member of the Advisory Board of the network for the Assessment & Evaluation of the Societal Impact of Science (AESIS). Alison was a long-standing Board member of PraxisUnico. She was awarded an OBE in 2010 in recognition of her contribution to Knowledge Transfer.

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Mr. Andrew Carlin
Director, EIT Food
Dr. Phil Clare RTTP
Deputy Director, Research Services, University of Oxford

Phil’s responsibilities at Oxford include leading or contributing to Knowledge Exchange in all its forms, including the Development of Oxford’s Innovation District. He works closely with Oxford University Innovation Ltd, the University’s wholly-owned technology transfer company. He works with the University’s Pro Vice Chancellors to support the regional agenda and is determined to find more ways to contribute to the growth of Oxford’s Innovation Ecosystem. He led regional teams that undertook Oxfordshire’s Science and Innovation Audit and crafted the Local Enterprise Partnership’s Innovation Strategy.

Phil worked previously at the Universities of Bath and Bournemouth in a variety of roles related to Research Management and Commercialisation, and for the UK Research Office in Brussels focusing on European research funding.

He is a Council member for Research England, former director of and Ambassador for PraxisAuril, the UK professional association for Knowledge Exchange Practitioners, and has previously been on the board of ARMA, the Association of Research Managers and Administrators. He is a registered technology transfer professional (RTTP), a Member of the Institute of Directors (MIoD) and is also a director of Fluvial Innovations Ltd. He has an MBA from Oxford and an MA in Intellectual Property Management from Bournemouth University. He used to be a chemist.

Dr. Sarah Macnaughton
Operations Director, Oxentia Limited

Operations Director at Oxentia, the innovation management consultancy spun out of Oxford University Innovation. With a background as an environmental microbiologist, I have 20 years experience in knowledge transfer, commercialisation and consultancy.

Jeff Skinner RTTP
Executive Director, Deloitte Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, London Business School

Jeff is the Executive Director of the Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at London Business School where he teaches others what he wishes someone had taught him 30 years ago and lives vicariously through his students’ manifold ventures.

Once upon a time he was Commercial Director at UCL where over 18 years he started and survived most of the now-commonplace KE units and mechanisms, ‘investing’ vast sums of government money which he was rather good at extracting. He was one of the founders of (and was once President of) both UNICO & ASTP. He’s been involved in Praxis and ATTP from inception, Chairing the Peer Recognition Panel of RTTP and never being asked to step down from the Professional Development Committee of Praxis. He does loads of training (probably more than anyone else) and talks to both Tech Transfer Managers and entrepreneurially-minded researchers all over the world. He runs a few seed funds, offers KT policy advice to governments and does KT audits for TTOs when they sound interesting.

A very long time ago he was an amateur thespian and secondary school teacher (which explains his love of the podium), spend years messing around in industry laboratories in the UK & US, did a PhD & MBA and spent a year on a ship prospecting for oil.

Mrs. Sarah Stables
Director, Stables & Co.

Knowledge Exchange Profile: For the past 15 years Sarah has worked to promote knowledge exchange between HE and industry, her work has been focused on Cumbria and as such her specialist area of understanding is the growth and development of new Universities as place based anchor institutions in rural areas. All of her industry and knowledge exchange work has involved engagement with businesses across a range of sectors, with a specific understanding of the challenges of enabling knowledge exchange in rural areas with a primarily SME business profile. European Funding has enabled much the Knowledge Exchange work, as such Sarah has experience of managing and delivering programmes of over £24M of European structural funds.

Over the past 15 years Sarah has worked with and managed teams of up to 26 Knowledge Exchange professionals and as such has a keen interest in the advancement of knowledge exchange professional development frameworks.

Sarah’s most recent role has been as Business Development and Enterprise Lead for the University of Cumbria. She has sat on many regional boards encouraging links between Universities and regional growth this includes: Cumbria LEP Technical Officers Group, the Cumbria ESIF committee and the North West Universities European Unit. Sarah was very proud to be an AURIL council member from 2015.

Dr. Liam Sutton
Associate Director, Research & Innovation, University of Bradford

I lead the department of Research and Innovation Services (RaIS) at the University of Bradford. We work in partnership with our academics to nurture a sustainable environment for undertaking research of the highest quality and applying knowledge for societal benefit worldwide.

A chemist by background, I studied at Oxford and Nottingham before working as a research scientist in academia and industry. I took up a business development role at the University of Sheffield’s Faculty of Science in 2006 and moved to Bradford in July 2013. I graduated with an MBA from the Open University in 2014.

Dr. Kathryn Walsh
Director of Knowledge Exchange Policy and Practice, UCL Innovation & Enterprise

Kathryn joined UCL in November 2018. Her role includes development of UCL’s knowledge exchange activities, development of associated policies, allocation of funding for knowledge exchange activities, and leadership of institutional response to the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF). Prior to joining UCL, Kathryn was Director of the Enterprise Office at Loughborough University, with broad responsibility for knowledge exchange, business development and commercialisation activities. Kathryn started her career in industrial research laboratories, working for BP and Sharp. She holds a degree and PhD in Physics from King’s College, London.

Dr. James Wilkie
Director of Enterprise & Innovation, University of Birmingham

After 20 years in Europe and the US delivering research, development & innovation within large multinational companies, James joined The University of Birmingham in 2007. As Director of Enterprise & Innovation, he is also CEO of Alta Innovations, which brings new ideas developed at the University to market and which manages the operations of Birmingham Research Park, including two business incubators.

James is an expert on the development and commercialisation of a wide range of new technologies ranging from renewable energy to the life sciences, especially those originating from academic research. He currently holds a number of Non-Executive Directorships and Advisory Board positions in technology ‘start up’ companies and early stage investment funds. In addition to his doctorate, he is a Chartered Engineer with an MBA.