Interface announces Principal as new Chair of Strategic Board

Professor Nolan takes over from Professor Sir Pete Downes

Date posted

12 March 2018

10:48

Professor Andrea Nolan has been appointed Chair of Interface Strategic Board, taking over from Professor Sir Pete Downes.


The Principal and Vice-Chancellor of Edinburgh Napier and Convener of Universities Scotland, Professor Nolan is a strong champion of business-academic collaborations.

Dr Siobhán Jordan, Director of Interface, welcomed the appointment, which comes as the organisation looks to strengthen its Strategic Board with a call for new members.

Dr Jordan said: “Professor Nolan brings a wealth of experience which will greatly help Interface in its quest to enable more business-academic collaborations. I look forward to working with her and the other members of the board in bringing the strategic vision and our developing plans to reality. We were very fortunate to have Professor Pete Downes as chair of the board for five years leading us to grow and adapt in an ever changing political and social environment and I would like to take this opportunity to thank him for his tremendous input.

“Working with Professor Nolan, we can draw on her experiences so we can continue to add value to the economy and society fulfilling our ambitions to have a catalytic influence on the Scottish Government’s vision as a 'nation with ambition', with Scotland designing and making the products of the future, boosting the economy and creating jobs.”

Professor Nolan said: “I look forward to my term of office as the new Chair of Interface Strategic Board. The Interface team working alongside universities, research institutes and colleges are key to ensuring that the sectors continue to make an ongoing contribution to Scotland’s economic success. I am passionate about building closer relationships between businesses and universities and the potential impact that these partnerships have on business, third sector and people across the world.”

Interface is also calling for up to four new members to join its Strategic Board. The Interface Strategic Board is formed of representatives from industry, partner university and research institutes, funders of knowledge exchange, and other relevant organisations that support business – academic engagement. 

Dr Jordan added: “We are seeking up to four new volunteer Board members who have a passion for innovation and collaboration between businesses and higher and further education to enable even greater economic and social impact.”

Interface connects businesses from all industry sectors to Scotland’s 23 universities and research institutes, and colleges throughout Scotland.  It is a unique service designed to address the growing demand from organisations and businesses which want to collaborate with academia.

Funded by the Scottish Funding Council, Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise, it is a free and impartial service which aims to stimulate demand for innovation and encourage companies to consider academic support to help solve their business challenges.

The Interface Strategic Board is made of up leading figures from academia and industry who provide independent advice and guidance on the development and implementation of Interface's ongoing strategic objectives. The Board meets four times a year and offer insight, direction and help to maximise the operational performance of Interface.