Western Gateway powerhouse on the lookout for top innovators to join its board

November 17, 2021

Leading lights in Swindon’s higher education, innovation and research communities are being invited to apply for posts representing the sectors on the board of the Western Gateway as it starts to ramp up its work.

The gateway is the cross-border economic partnership on either side of the River Severn stretching from Swindon to Swansea. 

The partnership brings together business, academia and government to work together to create opportunities for the 4.4m people who live in the gateway area.

It was launched two years ago as the UK’s third regional powerhouse to secure similar economic benefits to the West of England and South Wales as the Northern Powerhouse and Midlands Engine.

As independent representatives for the higher education, innovation and research sectors, the two successful candidates will join the board on two-year terms on a voluntary basis as

Western Gateway looks to begin delivering new programmes of work for communities across the area.

These will include helping the UK’s transition to Net Zero, connecting communities on both sides of the Severn, encouraging innovation across different sectors and opening doors to international trade.

The Western Gateway said the representatives will provide a strong and prominent voice for the sectors and champion the partnership which includes local authorities, the West of England Combined Authority, the Cardiff Capital Region, three local enterprise partnerships (LEPs), at national and international events.

Western Gateway chair Katherine Bennett CBE, pictured, said: “This is a great opportunity to join our partnership as we look to build on the evidence to deliver results for the people who live here.

“As the voice of academia, innovation and research, you will play a key role in shaping how our powerhouse works to level up communities and power the UK’s transition to Net Zero.”

She thanked the first two representatives – University of Bristol president and vice-chancellor Prof Hugh Brady and Prof Julie Lydon OBE, vice-chancellor and chief executive officer of the University of South Wales – who have now completed their two-year terms.

They had provided invaluable contribution to setting the strategic direction for the Western Gateway, she added.

In order to be considered, applicants will need to prove that they are a senior leader in a higher education, research or innovation institution in the Western Gateway area and have an influential network of contacts within the sector.

Applications close on 19 December. For more information, click here





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