Life Sciences Bridging Fund Scientific Advisory Board appointment

12 June 2015

Dr Rhian Hayward
Dr Rhian Hayward

Dr Rhian Hayward from Aberystwyth University has been appointed to the new Life Sciences Bridging Fund Scientific Advisory Board.

The appointment of Dr Hayward, who is Business Development Manager at the University’s Research, Innovation and Business department, was announced by Welsh Government Economy and Science Minister Edwina Hart on Wednesday 10 June.

The Board will provide advice on the management and delivery of the £3m Life Sciences Bridging Fund on behalf of the Life Sciences Hub Wales.

It will recommend projects for approval and be responsible for the provision of significant mentoring and coaching to successful and potential applicants.

The Bridging Fund is anticipated to support up to 20 of the very best research projects over two years, maximising their commercial benefits and to turn the most promising science research projects into new businesses, stimulating further growth in the sector, and creating high quality employment opportunities.

Dr Hayward is one of 9 board members appointed, the others being Dr David Owen – Chair, Professor Javier Bonet, Dr Alison Campbell, Dr Peter Corish, Dr Colin Greengrass, Professor Jackie Hunter, Professor Chris McGuigan, Professor Dawood Parker. The appointments are for 3 years.

Mrs Hart said: “I am delighted at the calibre of applicants to the Board and the wealth and breadth of experience they bring. They are set to play a key role in turning first class research into commercially viable businesses in Wales and their knowledge, capability and expertise will be invaluable.

“There is excellent research being undertaken in this sector in Wales which needs to be translated into new businesses and this is where the provision of significant mentoring and coaching to successful and potential applicants is of vital importance.

“The Bridging fund will sit alongside the Welsh Life Sciences Investment fund to provide a coherent pathway to deliver excellent economic benefits for the Welsh economy.

“I would like to thank the newly appointed Board members for their interest in developing the sector in Wales and their willingness to give their time to help build the next generation of life science businesses.”

Professor April McMahon, Vice-Chancellor at Aberystwyth University said: “This is excellent news for Dr Hayward and for Aberystwyth University. With a background in biotechnology, Dr Hayward is the University’s Business Development Manager: her work in the field of knowledge exchange and business engagement within the university sector and her extensive experience of advising investors, universities and SMEs on the commercialisation of early stage life science technologies makes her an ideal appointment. It also reflects Aberystwyth's emphasis on commercialising research across many disciplines, and particularly through the development of the University’s new £40m Innovation and Enterprise campus”.

Dr Rhian Hayward
Prior to her appointment as Business Development Manager at Aberystwyth University, Dr Rhian Hayward worked for 4 years in Technology Transfer at the University, managing patent applications, funding for technology development projects and licensing to industry.

Before joining the University, Dr Hayward worked in the private sector for 15 years and founded a consultancy company which advised investors, universities and SMEs on the commercialisation of early stage life science technologies.

A graduate of King College London, Dr Hayward gained her DPhil at the University of Oxford and carried out postdoctoral research at the Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases, NIH, USA.

Dr Hayward currently sits on the Welsh Industrial Development Advisory Board which advises the Welsh Government Minister for Economy, Science and Transport on financial assistance for industry in Wales.

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Contacts

Dr Rhian Hayward
Research, Business and Innovation
Aberystwyth University
01970628744 / rih@aber.ac.uk

Arthur Dafis
Communications, Marketing and Public Affairs
Aberystwyth University
01970 621763 / 07841 979 452 / aid@aber.ac.uk