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Welcome to the Innovation Network!

If you are a senior technologist or a strategic leader in a high-tech manufacturing business, you will be in very special company – many people like you.
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What are we about?

The Network exists to foster exploration and promotion of best practice in the leadership of innovation within UK high-tech manufacturing.  Cross-fertilisation between sectors and disciplines is encouraged.

Three events are held in the year – Autumn, Spring and early June –  where eminent speakers present their latest thinking and practices.  Everyone gets the chance to pose questions and consider the possible implications for their own organisation and themselves as leaders.

Attendees enjoy a rich learning environment where they have the rare opportunity to mix with respected peers the way people used to have serendipitous conversations with peers around the coffee machine in days gone by.

Ultimately the goal of the Network is to help members’ businesses to prosper by innovating to meet customer needs in a rapidly changing world.

How are we different?

We make networking for intellectuals a comfortable and enjoyable experience.  Dialogue and exploration are key.  As is addressing innovation beyond technology alone – most participants would confess to being technophiles and enjoying hearing about other technology developments.  However, many occupy (or aspire to) senior positions, so we provide the opportunity to extend one’s horizon to the wider business environment, and to focus the human and organisational aspects of innovation.

Each of our events are carefully designed to facilitate conversations in small groups about the material shared by our speakers.  Participants are generally very open about their own in-depth experience, and the ensuing dialogue encourages new thinking and the translation of new insights into pragmatic application back in one’s workplace.  Furthermore, relationship-building is gently facilitated and made easy – we do “networking, naturally”.

Unlike events for specific professions, a diverse range of disciplines and sectors are represented – engineers and scientists from many fields, alongside professional advisers and business managers.  Organisations of varying sizes and stages of maturity are also represented.  This diversity is important.

Individuals who attend are often those who play a key role in fostering the innovation of products and processes in their own (or their clients’) organisations.  Everyone is keen to learn and generously share of their wisdom.

If you think you would fit in and benefit from being part of the group and that you can bring something to it, please come and experience an event.  See here for the 2019-20 dates.  We would love to meet you.

Why participate?

The Innovation Network is an impressive community of innovators in high-tech manufacturing that convenes three times a year at highly informative events.  You’ll meet a fascinating mix of accomplished peers representing a wide range of sectors.  Topics are suggested by Network members, elucidated by speakers at the forefront of their fields, and explored by participants through rich dialogue.  Members, and non-members interested in becoming members, are welcome.

Attendees go away richly informed and inspired to take helpful ideas and insights back to the workplace.  Plus they have had an enjoyable time.  In an ever virtual world, our events offer the opportunity to fruitfully engage with a quality ready-made peer community.  Even natural introverts who think networking is not their forte, leave having effortlessly built several meaningful connections with other attendees that could, and probably will (as has been experienced many times), bear fruit.   Why don’t you join us?

Members’ words

What do we do?

The Innovation Network Mindmap Graphic

Today’s innovators – creating tomorrow’s world!

Come and join us to hear about…

  • Advances in technologies in fields other to your own

  • Trends in the wider business environment

  • Strategic business leadership for technical experts

Who belongs to the Network?

Members are a select group of strategic leaders and mid-career professionals from high-tech manufacturing firms and relevant professional services across the South of the UK.  Many are technical innovators of global repute in their own field.  All are deeply curious about disruptive technologies and about advances in the leadership of innovation in other organisations and sectors.  They seek to explore the potential benefits for their own organisations and for their personal leadership effectiveness.

Read more about us here.

The Annual Events Calendar

The programme typically consists of three quality events per year: Autumn, Spring and early Summer.

The Autumn and Spring events are typically held in a location of scientific or technological interest, possibly at the premises of a Network member.   The day begins at 8.45am and runs to 3.00pm, at which point there is an optional tour of the host venue.

Our Summer event is a larger congregation of innovators, and the flagship of our calendar – the “Innovators’ Assembly”.  A diverse range of speakers will lead us in lively dialogue about systemic issues facing contemporary innovators.  The day begins at 8am and runs until 5pm, and is held at Oxford’s Kassam Stadium.

The mix of topics and speakers ensures that each event informs and inspires members. Connections between attendees are facilitated and the opportunity is provided to consider the translation of any learning into members’ own environment.

Expect to hear thought provoking ideas and learn something unexpected.  Expect to meet people of great value and interest.  Expect to enjoy yourself.  And…expect serendipity!

Upcoming Events


The Innovation Network brings both the business and the human aspects of leading innovation into consideration.  Being successful as a leader of innovation goes beyond being a great technologist.  Business systems, processes, structures and people dynamics create the all important context.  If leaders of innovation understand and manage these well, they are better able to contribute effectively as strategic leaders.

So the Network members are given access leadership Masterclasses at an attractive preferential rate. Topics include, e.g. Strategic Thinking for Senior Technologists, Prioritising Innovations, Commercial Communications for Technologists, Building and Innovative Team, Positive Politics at Work.

See the range available for 2019-2020 here.

Non-members of the Network are very welcome too.

See the upcoming calendar of Masterclasses here.

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