We are recruiting a Network and Partnership Manager to join the Innovation Alliance WM executive team. This is a fantastic opportunity to join our small but dynamic team at a time when the role of innovation in economic recovery is high profile in the region.
Read the full job posting and apply here.
The role of Network and Partnership Manager is based on a Fixed-Term Contract until September 2022.
£33,000.00 to £35,000.00 per annum (dependent on experience).
Overall Aims of the Innovation Alliance West Midlands (IAWM):
Support the building and maintenance of a thriving innovation ecosystem – with a strong focus on:
• Maintaining a connected and well-informed network of diverse organisations engaged in innovation (including working groups, events, communication activity).
• Enabling the broad ecosystem to support delivery of regional and national innovation objectives.
• Engaging business, including those with limited involvement in innovation.
• Channelling the bottom-up views of the wider innovation community to inform regional and national policy thinking.
Catalysing collaborative innovation activity – with a strong focus on:
• Demand-led innovation.
• Large scale, multi-partner opportunities.
• Activities that support the delivery of innovation objectives of the 3 LEP / WMCA Local Industrial Strategy Innovation pillar by the WM Innovation Board.
• Maintaining a ‘reservoir’ of ideas and pipeline projects ready to activate / accelerate as opportunities emerge locally, regionally or nationally.
Duties and Responsibilities:
To facilitate and contribute to the work of the Virtual Innovation Team (VIT), innovation specialists in cluster/ sector support bodies in the West Midlands (working with the Director who is responsible for building and convening the VIT). This includes:
• Work with VIT to understand barriers and enablers to business (especially SME) innovation.
• Work with the VIT to identify/ respond to opportunities for new partnerships and collaborative projects that will stimulate business innovation, particularly connecting to Smart City Alliance members and activity.
• Support VIT members to development consortia, proposals and funding bids.
• Support the Director in the oversight and development of the VIT including: supporting regular VIT meetings; participating in regular catch-ups with individual VIT members; maintaining a view of activity across the VIT including any networks they run or communities on The Grid.
• Lead on the development of The Grid (an online platform developed with support from WMIP) as a tool for WMIP/ IAWM/ VIT team communication and sharing, working with The Grid team.
• To lead the development and operation of the Smart City Alliance, one of several networks associated with IAWM/ WMIP across the public, private, university and third sector that strengthen the innovation ecosystem and facilitate collaborative innovation activity and business support. The role includes: building and maintaining membership, maintaining an up-to-date view of relevant market trends, policy, emerging technologies and opportunities, gathering and managing the sharing of intelligence and information and identifying themes, speakers and strategic areas of focus and overseeing meeting arrangements.
• To act, as appropriate, as a spokesperson and ambassador for the Innovation Alliance WM and for Innovation in the West Midlands, developing and maintaining strategic relationships with key organisations and individuals.
• The post holder is a member of the IAWM Executive team and the VIT and will contribute to and benefit from the experience and other activities of the team, as appropriate and deputise for other team members when required.
• A sound knowledge of innovation drivers, policy and funding in the UK, and an understanding of local economic development issues; experience in the West Midlands context is desirable.
• An understanding of business culture and drivers gained through working in or with the private sector: experience with SMEs is particularly desirable.
• Experience of developing and/ or managing large multi-partner projects, with partners from a wide range of backgrounds and sectors.
• Experience of bidding for and managing public funds at scale; experience of writing business plans and/ or Green Book cases is desirable.
• Tenacity, flexibility, good organisation and IT skills.
• Excellent communication, teamworking and networking skills, but with an ability to work independently and take a lead role as required.
• Experience and/ or knowledge of Smart Systems or contributing technologies and knowledge is highly desirable.