Seven Hills launched the inaugural Future Forum event on behalf of Scotland House this month; the first of a new programme of monthly breakfast events looking at the future of business.
The breakfast debate, ‘Innovating for Success: From Idea to Impact’, bought together leaders in business and research to discuss the most innovative businesses working to commercialise science, and the partnerships that are bringing research out of the lab and into real life.
Seven Hills Co-Founder Michael Hayman MBE DL chaired the discussion with Katrina Payne, Partnerships Development Lead at the Alan Turing Institute; Dr Graeme Malcom OBE, CEO and Founder at M Squared Lasers; and Andrew Roughan, Managing Director of Plexal.
Scottish Government Head of Economic Policy and Networks Mark Boyce introduced the debate by considering the important role Scotland has to play in becoming a world leader of innovation.
Speakers argued that the UK needs to focus on areas where industry and academia can collaborate, to modernise and commercialise research. They agreed that the UK has no shortage of good ideas to make a difference, but there is often a problem of scalability and ambition.
Looking ahead at how the UK can encourage more innovation in the future, the panelists argued that we must celebrate our successes more, and that companies must show they’re creating a world-leading solution to a global problem.
The debate concluded that whatever form innovation takes, it needs partnerships, funding and optimism to ensure it achieves its true potential, agreeing that innovation should be about more than just GDP – it should be about solving the unsolvable problems of our time.