Innovation eco-systems - often referred to as "clusters" - are fundamental to achieving a healthy knowledge economy based on the successful commercialisation of new ideas, knowledge and research results.
Successful innovation eco-systems such as the Greater Cambridge area in the UK are widely admired but often not well understood. Replicating their success is far from trivial, and incorrect approaches to achieving it can prove to be both costly and ineffective. We can help to unlock the secrets of their success and assist with the development and implementation of policies and strategies aimed at achieving business success and economic benefits.
Cambridge Innovation Solutions was founded by Dr Alex Smeets, a former Regional Director for Oxford Innovation Ltd and Director of St John's Innovation Centre in Cambridge, who has more than 20 years experience of supporting innovation and the commercialisation of research.
Alex is an Associate of Cambridge Enterprise and a registered and approved Growth Coach for GrowthAccelerator, providing expert, tailored advice to help ambitious businesses achieve rapid, sustainable growth. He has a PhD in Materials Science from the University of Cambridge and worked in materials research and development for five years before branching out into the support of innovation, entrepreneurship and the commercialisation of new knowledge.
Over the years his activities have spanned a wide range of innovation support areas including delivering innovation and access to finance support in the East of England region; undertaking innovation consultancy and delivering training and mentoring on innovation support at national and international level, particularly in Eastern Europe and South America (see here and here for examples); and providing incubation and networking support to innovation centres. He was also actively involved in the European Commission's Innovation Relay Centre Network (now Enterprise Europe), brokering technology partnerships across national borders in Europe, for more than 10 years in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and for several years at St John's Innovation Centre was Technology Liaison Manager for the i10 network of universities.
Cambridge Innovation Solutions works closely with other innovation support experts and organisations in Cambridge and Oxford with complementary experience and skills, and can therefore provide access to a broad pool of knowledge and understanding of the issues involved.