Livestock and aquaculture are a key part of the £120 billion AgriFood sector in the UK. Livestock represents a significant proportion of the agricultural sector both by value and land use area, and aquaculture is an important industry sector producing high-value exports, and with strong growth potential around the world. Innovation is crucial to ensure success in the sector, and also to deliver targets related to Net Zero and key UN Sustainable Development Goals. We are looking to recruit a new team member that can enhance our deep expertise and powerful connections, and drive positive change in this important industry sector.
We are looking for an enthusiastic individual to join us in driving innovation within the AgriFood sector, with a particular emphasis on supporting those companies working in livestock and aquaculture. The role will facilitate business growth and help promote and drive knowledge transfer between the science and technology base and industry, promoting networking and accelerating innovation relevant to AgriFood businesses. You will help catalyse the development of new technology enabled products and processes that will benefit businesses, the economy, the environment and society.
The post will be varied, working with businesses across the AgriFood sector but with a focus on opportunities driven by industrial challenges of the livestock and aquaculture industries. An appreciation of, or experience in the use of science and innovation within these industries is required.
Key accountabilities within the role:
- Deliver and assist in the support of new funding streams related to industrial challenges relevant to AgriFood.
- Deliver and assist in the development of an AgriFood work programme within KTN.
- Prepare future work programmes in agreement with stakeholders and team members.
- Support the development of cross-cutting application areas working closely with KTN colleagues in other areas (e.g. Robotics applied to benefit AgriFood) and contribute to KTN wide activity in key priority areas such as Net Zero.
- Identify and monitor trends and opportunities for livestock and aquaculture innovation through interaction with business and the technology base.
- Ensure that industry is aware of the funding opportunities within the livestock and aquaculture research and innovation sphere.
- Facilitate networking opportunities for industry to meet with peers and potential collaborators through the organisation of workshops and other meetings etc.
- Engage with companies, research institutions and universities, mainly within the UK, to understand their R&D needs and innovation capabilities.
- Key responsibilities within the role
- Work with the AgriFood team to understand the innovation needs and opportunities for the growth of UK livestock and aquaculture industries and the scientific capabilities of the research base, facilitating the transfer of knowledge within and between these groups and the establishment of collaborations.
- Help understand and facilitate access to innovation support mechanisms for businesses and to help develop funding and investment applications.
- Promote the benefits of KTN and innovation within a business context to the UK sector including the preparation of communications materials (newsletters, blogs of interest etc) and the use of various media.
- Display and maintain a good scientific and technical awareness in a broad range of topics of relevance to the UK capability and industry needs in livestock and aquaculture, and other relevant areas.
- Liaise closely with KTN staff across all sectors and technologies to ensure a good understanding of other activities within KTN, to ensure well informed and integrated working.
- Help to organise meetings, workshops, networking events and exchange programmes in a variety of commercial and scientific areas.
- Undertake necessary administrative duties including the timely completion of accurate reports, meeting minutes, timesheets and expenses, and use of the KTN Customer Relationship Management system.
- Work within the KTN structure in a flexible manner, e.g. take part in joint activities with colleagues in other teams.
Experience and Qualifications
- A background in a relevant science, agriculture or related discipline is required to degree level, or equivalent experience. A post-graduate qualification in a similar field is desirable but not essential.
- Experience at a technical, academic or business level with the agriculture sector (and preferably experience in livestock or aquaculture), with knowledge and experience in a business-relevant field in the private sector desirable.
- Experience of delivering projects for external customers or working with industrial collaborators would be advantageous.
- An awareness of knowledge transfer or business development processes would be beneficial.
- This role requires a highly motivated, self-starting and results oriented individual with a good understanding of commercial issues or a desire and the ability to learn on the job.
- Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to communicate confidently and build effective relationships.
- Team player with good relationship building and influencing skills; able to interact with and understand the needs and capabilities of a wide variety of stakeholders and clients.
- Enjoys working in a collaborative manner in an open, honest, and diverse environment.
- A good communicator with well developed written and verbal skills, able to communicate complex ideas clearly and persuasively across multi disciplinary teams and stakeholders, explaining complicated matters simply.
- Flexible, reliable and adaptable with good time management skills.
- Comfortable working autonomously with little supervision or as a team member as required.
- Sound scientific knowledge across a range of disciplines, highly numerate.
- Collaborate with KTN Events Managers to develop, organise and effectively deliver events. This skill is desirable but if experience in this area is lacking, the candidate must have a desire and the ability to learn on the job.
- High level of IT literacy, with excellent administrative and organisational skills.
- Willingness to travel by public transport or by own car is required as post may involve considerable travel including overnight at times. Holder of a driving licence would be desirable.