Professor Robert Akid

Professor Robert Akid is a past holder of the BP/Royal Academy of Engineering Chair in Corrosion & Materials. Prof. Akid is a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals & Mining (IOM3. His principal research activities include the evaluation of localised corrosion in metals/alloys and its implications in the early stages of corrosion and corrosion fatigue damage in which he has over 35 years experience. Since 1993 he has worked on comparing conventional methods of assessing corrosion damage with that of the new electrochemical scanning probe (ESP) techniques. Through this work he became the Coordinator of the EPSRC funded UK-based ESP Network which undertook and completed an associated EPSRC-funded Multi-Project Research Equipment programme to initiate University-Industry collaborative studies of localised corrosion of steels, Al alloys and welded systems using these techniques. Recent research council awards include (with Smith) two Medical Research Council grants, a Discipline Hopping Award, assessing (a) encapsulation of antibiotics in sol-gel coatings and (b) potential of enzyme encapsulated sol-gel coatings as biosensors; EPSRC and EPSRC Follow-on fund grants related to the “Development of a functional sol-gel coating system via encapsulation of microorganisms”. Prof Akid is a past recipient of a Royal Academy of Engineering Senior Research Fellowship and Yorkshire Enterprise Fellowship. Prof Akid has published some 100+ scientific papers covering the above research areas and more recently has published and successfully patented in the area of functional sol-gel coatings. He is widely connected with industry and has produced over 60 industrial research and expert witness reports. During his collaboration with BP he worked on investigating the corrosion and mechanical damage processes associated with materials operating in hostile environments within the oil and gas industry. His research topics have included the following;

1. Corrosion-Stress synergy. Corrosion fatigue, stress corrosion cracking and hydrogen embrittlement in extreme environments.
2. Development of local electrochemical scanning probe techniques for localised corrosion and Environment-assisted cracking.
3. Development of organic-inorganic hybrid functional sol gel coatings for corrosion resistant, antifouling and antibacterial surfaces
4. Evaluation of anti-infective and mechanical properties of antibiotic bone cements.
5.Modelling corrosion fatigue lifetime.
6.Cellular Automaton modelling of localized and stress-assisted localized corrosion.
7.Pit-Crack transition modelling based upon local electrochemical
8.Development of anti-fouling/MIC coatings.
9.Development of anti-infective coatings for medical implants.
10.Crevice and Galvanic corrosion of pipeline materials.
11. Hydrogen embrittlement in high strength alloys for the oil & gas sector.

Matthew Spencer

I currently lead the public sector sales team at Telefonica O2 providing mobile and ICT solutions for the public sector. I have enjoyed a career mostly in sales and customer facing roles and strongly beleive that sales is one of the “unsung” professions in industry requiring skill, discipline, knowledge and self-motivation to succeed. I didn’t consider it was a career choice from school and yet it has been very rewarding.

For the last ten years I have been involved in delivering solutions to the public sector from 600 million prescriptions into doctor’s surgeries through to border security and the electronic monitoring of offenders. As a private sector business working into public there are many nuances to consider about how they buy and what industry can do to support policy and help Government to make the right decisions. I have worked on projects such as the GPS tracking of offenders and how government and policing can better protect victims of violence.

In the past I have also delivered motivational training including designing and delivering a course to young people on developing and following their visions and goals. It is so important for young people to understand how they can work to be successful, develop their value and purpose and move through their careers.

Tom Chalmers

Tom Chalmers is the Managing Director of Legend Times, a group of five publishing companies he has founded. He started his first company in 2005 when aged 25, Legend Press, a book publisher focused predominantly on mainstream literary and commercial fiction. Chalmers subsequently acquired Paperbooks Publishing, and later launched Legend Business, a business book publisher, followed by self-publishing and writer workshops companies, New Generation Publishing and Write-Connections, respectively. He also founded IPR License in 2012, a global rights licensing platform, which after two rounds of funding he sold in 2016, and is the founder of new content curation venture AIContexx.

He was the 2018 winner of the Global Outstanding Young Person Award in the Big Ben Awards at Westminster and has been shortlisted for UK Young Entrepreneur of the Year, UK Young Publisher of the Year, UK Young Publishing Entrepreneur of the Year, and longlisted for the Enterprising Young Brit Award. He also speaks regularly on publishing and business and is a Business Mentor for the Prince’s Trust.

Richard Walker

Born in Chester in 1980, Richard graduated in geography from Durham University and then qualified as a chartered surveyor. He developed his own property businesses in Poland and the UK before joining Iceland, the company founded by his father Malcolm, in 2012.

Richard spent his first year with the business as a full-time shelf-stacker and cashier in London before becoming an Iceland store manager.

He was appointed Managing Director of The Food Warehouse, Iceland’s chain of larger format stores, in 2015, and is also the Group lead on sustainability issues.

Richard is married with two daughters. Outside family and business, his greatest passions are trail running, skiing, surfing and climbing.

Daksh Gupta

Daksh has over 25 years’ experience in the automotive retail sector and joined the Company in 2008 as its Chief Executive Officer. Daksh was previously Group Managing Director for Ridgeway Group and the Chief Operating Officer of Accident Exchange Group PLC in 2007. He was also Franchise Director for Inchcape for seven years where he was responsible for the Volkswagen, Audi and Mercedes-Benz brands.

In July 2015 Daksh was named as CEO of The Year by Motor Trader magazine and the same industry renowned publishers also named him in the top 5 most influential people in the UK automotive industry.

He is a Fellow of the Institute of the Motor Industry (FIMI) and Vice President of BEN, the charity for those who work or have worked in the automotive and related industries. His dedication to BEN was recognised in July 2011 when he was presented an outstanding achievement award for services to the charity and also for turning around the performance of Marshall Motor Group.

In June 2017 Daksh was invited to become a companion of the chartered management institute (CCMI) Daksh is also a Freeman of the City of London.

Stuart Murphy

Stuart Murphy is ENO’s Chief Executive Officer.
Stuart grew up in Leeds, where his passion for classical music was sparked by playing the clarinet in Leeds Youth Orchestra and Leeds Youth Opera. He began his career at BBC Manchester, worked in Africa on the BBC’s Great Railway Journeys with Professor Henry Louis Gates Junior, and became the country’s youngest TV Channel Controller at the age of 26, running comedy and music channel UK Play.
Stuart subsequently became Channel Controller of BBC Choice, then devised, launched and ran BBC Three in 2003. While at BBC Three he commissioned shows from Gavin and Stacey to Bodies and developed a reputation for developing new talent as well as for commissioning innovative, award-winning programming. Particularly notable was Flashmob The Opera, a live opera from Paddington Station in October 2004, which brought together opera choruses from across the country with the BBC Concert Orchestra and was watched live by almost 100,000 viewers. This was followed, in April 2005, with Flashmob The Opera: Meadowhall, a specially adapted version of the Faust legend, again bringing opera to new audiences in an unexpected setting. BBC Three went on to win both Channel of the Year and Best Entertainment Channel.
After two years as Creative Director at Two Four Productions, Stuart joined Sky in 2009 to run family channel Sky One. At Sky One Stuart brought to the screen numerous award-winning shows from Stan Lee’s Lucky Man to Mad Dogs, from An Idiot Abroad to Stella and from Modern Family to Flash. After two years of Stuart’s leadership, Sky 1 was named Channel of the Year for the first time in its 20-year history.
In 2011 Stuart devised, launched and ran Sky Atlantic, bringing, among others, Game of Thrones, Mad Men, Boardwalk Empire, The Affair, Big Little Lies and Fortitude to UK screens. Under his tenure, he attracted many individuals to work with Sky for the first time, including Sir David Attenborough, Joanna Lumley, Dawn French, Idris Elba, Meera Syal, Matthew Perry, Kim Cattrall, Jon Hamm, Davina McCall, Melvyn Bragg, John Ridley and Sally Wainwright and numerous others.
Stuart has sat on the board for A&E Networks International and Jaunt Virtual Reality Company.

Liz Jolly

Liz Jolly has been Chief Librarian at the British Library since September 2018. She is responsible for teams delivering core activities such as collection development; services for researchers, learners, businesses and entrepreneurs; research strategy and digital scholarship; an extensive cultural programme of exhibitions, events, and the Library’s online presence. Liz has over twenty years’ experience in a variety of institutions in the university sector, most recently as Director of Student and Library Services at Teesside University. She is a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Fellow both of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) and the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA). She was Chair of SCONUL (the UK university library directors’ group) from 2014-16, and Chair of the Northern Collaboration, a group of twenty-seven higher education libraries in the North of England, from 2016-18. Liz is a member of the Editorial Board of the New Review of Academic Librarianship and is a former member of the British Library Advisory Council.

Lord James Bethell

James Bethell is a British hereditary peer and Conservative member of the House of Lords. Bethell was educated at Harrow School and the University of Edinburgh.
He became a member of the House in July 2018, after winning a Conservative hereditary peers’ by-election.

He had previously worked as a journalist, managed the Ministry of Sound nightclub, then founded Westbourne Communications before selling it to Cicero Group on becoming a peer.

He is married to Melissa (nee Wong), a businesswoman. They have four children.

Will Saunders

I am an independent media consultant, and executive producer with over twenty years experience on television, on radio and online. I am currently Chief Creative Officer for the recently awarded Storyfutures Gateway Cluster and Storyfutures Academy. These are industrial strategy consortia projects led by the University of London, Royal Holloway that will explore the future of the UK screen based industries and that include; BBC Studios, Endemol Shine, Pinewood, Sony Interactive Entertainment, HTC & The National Film & Television School as partners. StoryFutures aims to pioneer immersive experiences across the UK’s Creative Industries with cutting edge, training, research, and investment into productions. We are currently working on pilots with The National Gallery, BBC Studios & Heathrow Airport. In 2017 I consulted with DCMS following the publication of The Cultural White Paper and a government review aimed at making the UK a world leader in Digital Culture. I led a workstream, public consultation exercise & co-authored the “Culture Is Digital” report which was launched in March 2018 by Secretary of State Matt Hancock M.P. As Creative Director, Digital, BBC Studios I ran Digital Development and Production for the UK’s leading media company with an annual slate of £350 million. In collaboration with BBC R&D I led and launched the BBC’s home for new ideas BBC Taster where new technologies, formats and talent are tested by audiences at scale. Since its launch in 2015 Taster has produced over 200 pilots exploring immersive media, voice led interaction and new forms of storytelling. It has had over 50 million page views, won numerous awards and led the way for data informed decision making, at the BBC. Before disappearing down a digital wormhole I was an experienced TV & Radio Producer, working at Radio 1, Comic Relief and was once Deputy Head of the BBC Radio Comedy Department. I have made award winning shows with; Flight of The Conchords, Lee Mack, Mel & Sue, Graham Norton, and in 1995 produced the Christmas #2 hit single “Wonderwall” by the Mike Flowers Pops. I am passionate about storytelling and the use of emerging digital tools and platforms to tell stories in new and exciting ways.

Amy Smith

Amy has been working in talent related roles within the visual effects industry for over fifteen years, in both the UK and Canada. In each role she has had responsibility for working with schools, colleges and universities to provide careers guidance and support educators with content. Amy regularly provides input to the UK government on the skills agenda for the visual effects industry and the creative industries more widely. She is also part of the steering group of the Next Gen Skills Academy who, with industry, launched a Level 3 Diploma in Games, Animation and VFX Skills and she took responsibility for working with NextGen to launch the two VFX Trailblazer Apprenticeships. Recently Amy has been appointed as Chair of the T-Level panel for Media, Broadcast and Production. The panel will be responsible for providing an employer perspective on the post-16 education landscape. She is also Non Executive Director of Access:VFX, an industry organisation working to improve the diversity of the visual effects industry.