Rt Hon David Willetts MP to headline UKSPA’s 30th Anniversary Summit at Birmingham’s ICC

The United Kingdom Science Park Association (UKSPA) is holding a major event at Birmingham’s International Convention Centre on 10th-11th July 2014 to celebrate the 30th anniversary of its’ formation. The event will be headlined by Rt Hon David Willetts MP, Minister for Universities & Science, and closed by Phil Smith, CEO of Cisco UK & Ireland and Chair of the Technology Strategy Board.

The two-day 30th Anniversary Summit comprises an international conference sponsored by intellectual property specialists Marks and Clerk, an exhibition sponsored by BEST Network (the largest, privately owned network of science parks) and an awards dinner sponsored by IT & Telecoms provider Essensys. The dinner is hosted by Dr Michael Mosley; writer and presenter of BB2’s ‘The Story of Science’ and the face of science and medicine on ‘The One Show’.  Over 800 delegates are expected to attend the conference and exhibition, many from overseas.

Paul Wright, CEO of UKSPA said: “This event will be the biggest gathering of the professionals responsible for running the UK’s network of science parks and innovation centres, since we celebrated our 25th anniversary in Manchester in 2009. There are now over 100 science, technology parks and innovation centres that are members of UKSPA. These locations accommodate some of the most cutting edge businesses in Europe and manage a host of initiatives to support start-ups and growing technology businesses.

“Having Rt Hon David Willetts, Minister for Universities and Science, to headline the conference will provide an insight into strategic Government thinking regarding support for pioneering technology companies, research and development, and start-ups. There will also be a number of international speakers, such as Josep Pique, Managing Director of the vast technology quarter 22@ Barcelona, and Dr David Ireland from Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation. In turn, we expect to welcome a number of international delegates to UKSPA’s 30th Anniversary Summit, to learn from and share best practice.”

The exhibition will feature 52 stands and two sponsored seminar theatres. For the first time, the exhibition will be open to members of the public, as well as all conference delegates.

Six awards will be presented at a glittering awards dinner for over 500 people on the evening of Thursday 10th July. Awards will be presented to the most successful company located on a science park, the most successful innovation environment, the most innovative project, to the location with the best track record for developing start-up businesses, to the most innovative partnership, and for design and sustainability. Confirmed award category sponsors are Haseltine Lake and Surrey Research Park. The UK Innovation Forum (UKIF), UKSPA Clarity, Northern Ireland Science Park, NETPark, Sheppard Robson and MIRA are additional sponsors of the event.

The event is being organised by Innovation Birmingham, and more information can be found at: http://www.ukspa30.com, or by contacting the UKSPA 3Oth Anniversary Summit team on 0121 250 3515.

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