Business leaders in the science-related industries are being encouraged to celebrate their achievements with a national award launched by the organiser of the Business of Science Conference. The Business of Science Leadership Award seeks to recognise a senior figure from the private, public or charitable sector who has made an outstanding contribution to business leadership in an area of science and innovation. The call for entries is open (closing 24th March) to ambitious leaders of science-based organisations of all sizes from across the UK who can demonstrate active engagement with the wider business community and an ongoing commitment to the promotion of science at the highest level.
A judging panel of high-profile industry figures including NWBLT member Richard Carter, MD, BASF UK, Steve Elliott, CEO of the Chemical Industries Association, Dr Gail Cardew of The Royal Institution, Richard Jones, CFO, Mereo BioPharma and Redx Pharma Plc CEO and chair of the judges, Dr Neil Murray, will meet in London in May to review the entries.
Creativity needs to be a key part of the curriculum if we are to be a driving force in the Northern Powerhouse, according to business leaders. The NWBLT Forum gathered to debate the importance of investment in training young people in both science and arts. Spearheaded in the UK by the Cultural Learning Alliance, the movement is calling to add the ‘A’ (arts) in the subjects of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) to become STEAM.
Speaking at a Forum meeting held at Sci-Tech Daresbury, Esme Ward, Head of Learning and Engagement at Manchester Museum, said: “Science educators are desperate to bring more creativity to the science curriculum. When you bring art and science together, there is huge potential for really extraordinary things to happen.”
David Willetts MP, the Minister of State for Universities and Science, surprised the delegates by opening the launch event of the NWBLT’s Science, Technology and Innovation Report. In his unscheduled appearance the Minister spoke warmly of his support for the approach NWBLT had taken with the “Exploiting the Excellence” report, by focusing on the North West’s four distinct strengths in materials, energy, cancer and computing science. For a film of the Minister’s opening address please click through to the main article.
The North West Business Leadership Team has released a detailed report into the science and innovation potential of the North West, highlighting that business could be set to gain significantly from the well-established R&D capacity available across the region.
The influential grouping is publishing its report, ‘Exploiting the Excellence’, at the Museum of Science and Industry, with keynote speeches by Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, President and Vice-Chancellor of The University of Manchester, and Andrew Miller MP, Chair of the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee. The NWBLT companies, which employ more than 50,000 people in the region, collaborated with universities, centres of R&D excellence alongside Local Enterprise Partnerships to highlight the region’s capability to be at the heart of an “innovation revolution”.
Friday 28th March sees the launch of the next in the series of NWBLT’s thought leadership reports on Science, Technology and Innovation. The event is taking place at the Museum of Science and Industry and will feature a keynote speech from Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, President & VC of the University of Manchester. The launch is particularly timely after the announcements in the recent budget.
The launch event is kindly being sponsored by AstraZeneca, Baxi, The University of Manchester and United Utilities.
The Government has encouraged local initiatives to replace the advisory committees, and the NWBLT is pleased to sponsor “Environment NW”. This follows on from an Environment Agency committee in the NW, and is now run by volunteers as an independent source of information. The website is http://www.environmentnw.org.uk and “Environment NW News” is packed with stories and links on NW issues such as waste, pollution, water, sustainability and climate change. The website is updated weekly, and includes hot topics (such as fracking) and local concerns (such as incinerators).
The third annual final of the North West Schools Science Competition organised by NWBLT was hosted at the Catalyst Science Discovery Centre on 1st December. Similar to X-Factor each finalist took it in turn to deliver a short presentation to an expert panel of judges from scientific, business and educational backgrounds on why they wanted to be scientists when they were older, before going on to answer a series of questions from the panel testing their knowledge and passion for the subject.
Judges praised the high standard of entries before selecting a winner from Year 7 and a winner from Year 8.
Conor Mulligan, age 12, a pupil at Bankfield School, Widnes was named winner of the Year 7 category. Conor said “I am ecstatic to have won – my Uncle Robert inspired me to want to become a scientist!”
Arisha Hussain, age 13, from William Hulme’s Grammar School in Manchester was winner in the Year 8 category. Arisha said “I cannot believe I have won the Year 8 category – I am so excited. I think science is the answer to all the questions.”
Conor and Arisha each received an iPod Touch and £250 for their school to spend on science equipment. In addition to this their classmates will all be invited to come along to the exciting Flash Bang – What a Reaction! event at the Catalyst Science Discovery Centre next year.
The North West Schools Science Competition is now open for entries. It is for pupils in Year 7 and Year 8 as at 1st September 2011. To enter you just need to email firstname.lastname@example.org up to 500 words on “Why I want to be a Scientist”.
Business in the Community, in partnership with Lancaster University Management School, has places on The Leading on Sustainability Programme, an innovative training programme for future leaders.
The NW is one of the first regions to set out how the region can capitalise on the opportunities from the drive towards resource efficient and low carbon living.