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Length: Welcome lunch (1 h) + 2 workshops (1 day each)

When: 12th December 2018 (Lunch introduction: 12:30 to 13:30), 6th February 2019 (9:30 to 16:30) and 6th March 2019 (9:30 to 16:30)

Where: Lunch at the Graduate School (TR6), workshops in Catalyst Belfast Fintech HubDonegall Square W, Belfast BT1 6JH (Ground floor of the Danske Bank, entrance via Howard street

Open to: Postdocs (research fellows, senior research fellows, fellowship holders) and Early Career Researchers (lecturers within first 5 years of first tenured academic post) from QUB with research interests in Life Sciences

Places: 20

Cost: Free; but attendance to the whole programme is compulsory once registered (registration deadline: 23rd November 2018, noon)


Business Alliance and the PDC are teaming up to offer postdocs (and ECRs) the P2D innovation Training Programme (ITP). This programme is sponsored by Queen’s MRC Proximity to Discovery (P2D) Industry Engagement Fund, which is dedicated to encouraging and supporting researchers to make connections with business at the outset of their academic career.

Increasingly, industry-academia collaborations are recognised as an integral part of research success with many benefits for academic partners including research funding, higher quality research outputs (publications, impact), growing contacts and networks, awareness of industry trends, and inspiration by application derived discussions.

The skills developped in this programme can be applied within industry-academia collaborations, an academic or an industry setting, making it suitable and helpful to researchers interested in a career in academia or in industry.

The programme will consist of:

  • Lunchtime welcome reception with Prof Alan Stitt (Dean of Innovation and Impact, MHLS) (12th December 2018)
  • 2 full days training:

Workshop 1: Innovation – A commercial perspective training (6th February 2019)
Workshop 2: Networking and negotiation: essential skills for your future career (6th March 2019)

  • Participants who have completed the programme and have an identified industry partner can receive an award of £2,000 from the P2D Fund to explore the potential of working together (mini project, travel, secondment or other KE activities)*

*Awardees must submit a brief report outlining activities undertaken and any future plans. Please note: It is not essential to have an identified industry partner to attend the programme.

The programme's outline can be downloaded here

Programme Objectives:

The ITP aims to prepare researchers for industry engagement by equipping them with the necessary skills to network and negotiate effectively, understand scientific innovation, and appreciate how Industry-Academia Collaborations (IAC) work.
See below for more description of the workshops.

Registration form

Workshop 1: Innovation – a commercial perspective

This workshop is for you if you are looking to develop your understanding of the priorities and language of the health and life sciences industry in the UK. The aim of this workshop is to develop project management skills in the context of industry academia collaborations (IAC).

The skills learned in this workshop will support effective interactions and well-managed projects with industry and will be of value if you are working in an Industry Academia Collaboration (IAC) or are looking for a career move into industry.

In this workshop, we explore a formal industry project development process from idea inception through to project implementation. You will practice project management tools and techniques and discuss cognitive and behavioural skills needed to implement them. We will discuss current UK industry, government and research council expectations of IAC. We will also explore existing funding opportunities.


Caroline Broad (Broad Associates Ltd)

Caroline gained her twenty years’ experience facilitating teams and delivering skills training for staff across sectors, with a focus on developing communication and collaboration skills of early career researchers and University staff.  

Caroline loves working with people who have a depth of knowledge and a passion for their work.  She starts with the assumption that everyone is naturally resourceful and capable and delivers value by developing an individual’s self-awareness, alongside an introduction to tools and theories that are directly applicable to their roles.

As Broad Associates Ltd, work includes delivery of an EPSRC funded Human Factors in Innovation programme; visiting lecturer in innovation and enterprise at the Royal Veterinary College; Project Management tutor for the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Clients include Imperial, University College London and Cambridge University.

Caroline is a certified practioner in Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) and Belbin Team RolesTM and is a Co-activeTM coach and Resilience Tools consultant.

Workshop 2: Networking and negotiation - essential skills for your future career

Networking means you will meet the right people. Negotiation helps you work with them. Both are essential in
building an academic career, working with collaborators, industrial partners, funders and your team.
This interactive workshop will explore both using case studies from a wide variety of issues researchers face:
working with those above and below, connecting with those outside the university and exploring the possibilities
of spin outs / startup.
Be prepared to meet, engage and explore the topics with your peers.


Dr Emma Williams (EJW Solutions)

Dr Emma Williams illuminates a wider career choice for early career researchers. She has a passion for enabling people to get the most out of their careers (academic or otherwise) with particular interests in enterprise skills and women's development. She has worked widely in the UK and overseas in research intensive settings delivering development events and coaching. She is a co-author of 'What every postdoc needs to know' using her 25+ years experience of the HE sector (from physicist to business owner).

When booking a course, please read our

Attendance policy

Feedback from postdocs

In addition, 100 % of respondents feel more confident networking and negotiating.