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New Partnerships Formed at TWI Innovation Network Convention

Tue, 26 July, 2022

Back again in person this year, the 2022 TWI Innovation Network (TWIIN) Convention, on 22 July at TWI Cambridge, UK, provided fertile ground for companies and organisations with an innovative mind-set to come together with a shared purpose and vision.

Chaired by Dr Cem Selcuk, Head of Business Development for TWIIN, the first presentation of the day was by keynote speaker Prof Hasan Mandal, President of TÜBİTAK: the Scientific and Technological Research Institution of Turkey, who covered a wide range of subject matter including the importance of new collaboration models for climate mitigation, the transformation required to move to reiterative, open innovation, policy tools to help achieve impact through research and development (R&D), and more.

Following an overview of TWIIN by Dr Selcuk, TWI’s James Foden, Section Manager, Technology Innovation Management and Heidi Dyson, Group Manager, Public Funding Management, gave an overview of three new TWIIN training courses aimed at providing participants who are engaged in collaborative R&D, with a suite of tools and skills to accelerate their abilities in understanding public funding calls, preparing proposals and managing the audit requirements of ensuing projects.

Next on the programme were guest speakers Omer Beysel, Assistant General Manager and Tuğrul Karasarlıoğlu, AR&GR Co-ordinator of Floteks Automotive who, respectively, looked at how international success can be achieved through collaboration on publicly funded European projects, and the ISOPREP project which is researching physico–chemical recycling and building a pilot plant to selectively extract polypropylene from other contaminants including additives and colorants.

Then Dr Abbas Mohimi, Head of Public Funding and Regional Engagement at TWI, introduced the audience to TWI Global Technology Centre, Singapore which was established to facilitate the transfer and commercialisation of technologies from TWIIN to the Asia Pacific market. With Singapore acting as a springboard into the ASEAN region, Dr Mohimi explained that the country offers a rich R&D landscape with competitive funding available for international collaboration.

The rest of the Convention was dedicated to partner matching and brokering, led by Dr Sally Shi, Collaborative Programmes Manager, TWI, who explained some of the upcoming funding opportunities through Horizon Europe and Innovate UK. Guest speakers for this segment of the day were Vikas Kumar of the Materials Innovation Centre, a partnership between TWI and the University of Leicester, who gave a presentation on the DINGBAT project: Digital Innovative testiNG of BATteries, Nick Allot of Nquiring Minds who discussed industrial connectivity and applications, cyber security, data sharing and more, plus several collaborative project case studies, and Prof Dayou Li for the Renewable Energy Innovation Centre, a partnership between the University of Bedfordshire and TWI, who drilled down into projects including 5G ERA, which will pioneer the standardisation of robot autonomy enhancement as a 5G vertical application.

An exhibition accompanied the Convention, where the breaks and lunch period provided dedicated time for delegates to catch up with ‘old faces’, form new acquaintances and meet the speakers.

Dr Cem Selcuk, Head of Business Development, TWIIN said “Bringing people together in person this year meant that they were able to benefit from networking activities associated not only with the Convention but also with the concurrently running NSIRC Research and Innovation Conference 2022. Being on site in Cambridge also meant that delegates were able to meet with TWI staff involved in the two events to talk about R&D and new technologies.” Adding “Once again, the Annual Convention provided a dedicated space for companies and organisations to get together and explore how they might work together to mutual benefit in the future.”

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