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Royal Society

Leading in Science: Innovation and the Business of Science

The Royal Society are the UK’s national science academy with a fellowship of 1,600 of the world’s most notorious scientists. The Society’s central purpose, is to ‘recognise, promote, and support excellence in science and to encourage the development and use of science for the benefit of humanity’. The Royal Society are committed to encouraging innovation and supporting technology transfer between the UKs science, engineering and industry bases. The Royal Society therefore wanted to design a programme to help Royal Society Research Fellows better understand the rapidly evolving relationship between science and industry, what it means to be a scientific entrepreneur and how to run a successful research group.

Collaborative Programme Design

The Innovation and the Business of Science Programme was designed collaboratively by the Royal Society, in partnership with Imperial College Business School, to focus on the latest theories in business and management, using data from research as well as first-hand experience from speakers who are leading scientists, managers of global science-based firms and business experts. The programme draws on Imperial’s expertise in innovation, entrepreneurship and the commercialization of science, and its record of managing highly successful industry-funded scientific research.

The programme runs across three stand-alone modules, each covering a different aspect of the business of science. The first module focused on the role of science in the economy and the relationship between science and industry, the second module focuses on management skills and leadership behaviours which underpin effective leadership in science. The third module, uses discussions and group projects to build the awareness and skills of how to be more effective as scientific entrepreneurs.

The company

Programme Aims

The programmes aims to equip Research Fellows with the necessary skills to communicate and negotiate effectively, understand the innovation process as well as how to create value from their own research. Participants gain a better understating of:

  • How the relationship between science, the economy and society is changing
  • What leading science means in this shifting context for researchers and research team leaders
  • How researchers can work more effectively with industry in obtaining funding and in commercialising their research