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TWIIN Convention 2020 Supports International Collaboration

Fri, 11 December, 2020

TWI Innovation Network (TWIIN) was delighted to be joined by over 150 delegates recently, from 30+ different countries, for its TWIIN Annual Convention 2020, which this year took place virtually in a new online format.

Bringing together a wealth of expertise, information, advice and practical examples in one event, the Convention provided an open-innovation approach to tackling the challenges and opportunities companies and organisations can experience when striving to innovate with technology to bring new products and services to market.

The all-day event was chaired by Dr Cem Selcuk, Head of Business Development, TWIIN who welcomed attendees before introducing the first speaker, Prof Tat-Hean, Director of Innovation and Skills, TWI. Tat-Hean gave a presentation illustrating how TWIIN has spearheaded international collaboration between industry, leading universities, Innovation Centres, research and technology organisations (RTOs) and companies from SME’s through to mid-caps and larger companies, to enable cutting edge technology development delivered with industry impact.

Next up to speak was Mark Barnett, Commercial Director of Fullagar Technologies, a partnership between Lloyd's Register and TWI.  Mark talked about ways of addressing innovation in a changing landscape and gave examples of ground breaking technology that businesses can take inspiration from, then went on to explain how Fullagar is moving ahead with industry and new product developments today.  He was followed by Benjamin Reid, Co-Founding Partner of Aspremont who took delegates on a deep dive into the world attracting investment for new technology projects including how to optimise business potential for investment, what to be aware of and must-do research, qualities investors are looking for and more.

New to the Convention for 2020 was a series of ‘pitch’ sessions by a selection of Innovation Centres, Universities and SMEs who gave insights into what has made their company or organisation successful in continuing to innovate and stay ahead of competitors.  The morning then concluded with presentations by Angela Angulo, TWIIN Innovation Consultancy Manager and Laurence Robinson, Technology Innovation Management Team Leader at TWI, who explained the support available to SMEs for accelerating their business’ potential including accessing public funding.

In the afternoon, delegates were able to join speakers and TWIIN staff for one of three interactive sessions.  TWI's Technology Innovation Management team ran a series for 1-2-1 Innovation Clinics with pre-registered companies to identify their innovation needs and opportunities within the Network.  During these discussions, several new relationships were identified through which partners could access public funding, TWI Membership services and joint projects to solve industry challenges, thereby paving the way for future collaboration with TWIIN.  Meanwhile, the Open Innovation Clinic and the Open Investment Clinic provided forums in which delegates could connect with the speakers and each other to discuss the latest opportunities and industry developments, and seek specific advice.

Tat-Hean Gan, TWI Director of Innovation and Skills said “It was great to be joined by so many delegates for this year’s Annual TWIIN Convention in its new online format!  Our aim in creating the Agenda for the conference was to deliver a day that was both informative and inspiring, and to demonstrate to both existing and future partners, colleagues and TWI Industrial Members that we are here to help them in a collaborative and practical way with engineering R&D and the exploitation of new technologies.”

“We have also expanded TWIIN into Europe through TWI Hellas, our office in Athens, Greece” Tat-Hean Gan continued. “Our colleagues there are already collaborating with SMEs and RTOs on a number of publicly funded technology development projects, therefore, if any Europe-based companies or organisations are looking to explore collaboration opportunities, I would encourage them to get in touch with us."

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