UK Science Park Association meet at Charnwood Campus to discuss the opportunities and challenges for UK Science Parks and hear how the Leicestershire Life Science Cluster is driving economic growth in the region

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Around 150 members of UKSPA attended the two-day conference, where leading speakers from the UKSPA network, Charnwood Campus,  Loughborough University, Charnwood Molecular (a Charnwood Campus tenant), the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership (LLEP) and the University of Leicester discussed in depth the challenges, opportunities and innovative ways that the science park sector continues to further engage, inspire and grow.

Our keynote speakers covered topics that are essential for the growth of the regions life sciences sector and also the science park sector nationally including cluster development, the journey to net zero and the development of sustainable science parks, investment and the current key drivers and opportunities and skills, talent and growth.  

James Chaffer, UKSPA’s Chief Executive said: ‘’We are delighted to hold our latest in-person event at Charnwood Campus. It’s an exciting time to be visiting, with its world class facilities Charnwood Campus is experiencing considerable growth in attracting world leaders in cutting edge research. This, in addition to the many other initiatives such as the Charnwood Campus Life Sciences Talent and Skills Institute, highlight the vital role the Campus plays both regionally and nationally in knowledge sharing, networking and collaboration. ‘’

Professor Don Jones, Co-Director Leicester Precision Medicine Institute and Leicester van Geest Multi-OMICs Facility said: “Universities play an important role in driving cluster growth which in turn delivers economic growth cementing the UK’s position as a scientific superpower.  The development of the cluster is connected with the existence of universities and scientific research activities in the region. Universities are a major employer, technology provider, and a source of knowledge and skills in the region. As a civic university, the University of Leicester is deeply committed to developing the life sciences cluster in our region. “

Gosia Khrais, Commercial Director at Charnwood Campus commented: “We are honoured to have hosted the UKSPA Autumn Conference at Charnwood Campus. It is testament to the strength of the life sciences cluster in the region, and the economic importance that our sector brings to the local and national economy.

This event gave us the opportunity to share our perspective on the importance of developing innovation clusters from having a clear vison, through strong leadership and resilient systems to tending to the virtual cluster of businesses around. Our ambition to become a leading next generation life sciences cluster in the UK, driving innovation, growth and improving healthcare for all is built on those foundations. We were also able to showcase our Cluster Support Platform which is increasing opportunities for our local companies to become inspired, embrace innovation, capable of building resilient and scalable business ultimately driving the UK forward as a scientific superpower.”

Andy Reed, Co-chair of the LLEP Board, said: “Inclusivity and sustainable growth are fundamental parts of our Economic Growth Strategy. As part of that, we are working on a host of projects to develop the skills and knowledge of individuals, organisations and businesses to help achieve the region’s objectives. These are key priorities for us and it was great to be able to describe our work to the conference delegates.”

Lee Paterson, CEO, Charnwood Molecular commented: “The conference is an important forum for discussing the opportunities and challenges facing the life science sector as it continues to develop and grow. It has been a privilege to share Charnwood Molecular’s journey to being the integrated drug discovery partner of choice and our vision for the future.”

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