Webinar: Achieving 2.4% in R&D - A cross-sector perspective

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In the 2017 Industrial Strategy White Paper, the UK Government set an ambition for the UK to increase its total R&D expenditure to 2.4% of GDP by 2027. Whilst expenditure on R&D has increased, as a percentage of GDP, the UK’s R&D expenditure still sat at 1.7% in 2018.

Hear from our panel, including Dame Ottoline Leyser, Chief Executive at UKRI to learn about the challenges and opportunities within R&D across the sectors.

Join us live to:

  • Understand how the Plan for Growth broadly supports R&D in UK
  • Learn more about UKRI's role in supporting R&D
  • Discuss how the sectors can work together to increase focus on R&D
  • Find out more about the challenges and opportunities within R&D
  • Dame Ottoline Leyser

    Chief Executive


    Professor Dame Ottoline Leyser is the Chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and Regius Professor of Botany at the University of Cambridge. UKRI brings together the UK’s Research Councils, Innovate UK and Research England, operating with a combined budget of more than £8bn per year. Prior to this Ottoline Leyser was Director of the Sainsbury Laboratory, University of Cambridge, an interdisciplinary research institute combining computational modelling with molecular genetics and cell biology to elucidate the dynamical systems underpinning the control of plant growth and development. She has made important contributions to understanding the role of plant hormones in developmental plasticity, using the control of shoot branching in Arabidopsis as a model system. Ottoline has a long-term interest in research culture and its effects on the quality and effectiveness of the research system.  She chaired the Nuffield Council on Bioethics project examining these issues and has been actively engaged in work aimed at generating a more inclusive, creative and connected culture. She has worked extensively in science policy. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society, a Member of the Leopoldina and EMBO, and an International Member of the US National Academy of Sciences. In 2017 she was appointed DBE for services to plant science, science in society and equality and diversity in science.

  • Hermone Berhane

    Product Development (PD) Site Head for UK


    Hermone Berhane has held several leadership positions during a 17 year career within Roche Pharma (R&D), specifically Product Development Safety. Hermone is a Pharmacology graduate by academic qualification and is currently the Product Development (PD) Site Head for Roche in the UK as part of a Global PD organisation. Hermone is also the Global Head of a Safety Operations team in his field of expertise and passion; patient safety and Pharmacovigilance in the R&D value chain.

  • Professor Helen McShane

    Director, Oxford NIHR Biomedical Research Centre

    University of Oxford

    Helen McShane is currently Director of the Oxford NIHR Biomedical Research Centre; Professor of Vaccinology at Oxford University; Deputy Head (Translation and Personnel), Medical Sciences Division; and an Honorary Consultant Physician in Infectious Diseases. Helen obtained an intercalated BSc in 1988, followed by a degree in medicine in 1991 (both University of London). In 1997 She was awarded an MRC Clinical Training Fellowship to undertake a PhD with Adrian Hill in Oxford, and was later awarded a PhD in 2001 (University of London). In 2001 she was awarded a Wellcome Clinician Scientist Fellowship, allowing her to complete her clinical training and subsequently awarded a CCST in HIV and GU Medicine in 2003. In 2005 and 2010, she was awarded a Wellcome Senior Clinical Research Fellowship. She currently holds a Wellcome Trust Investigator Award. Helen was elected to be a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2019. Since 2001, Helen has lead a TB vaccine research group at the University of Oxford. She led the development of MVA85A, the first new TB vaccine candidate to enter efficacy testing. Current areas of focus include the development of controlled human mycobacterial challenge models, aerosol delivery of vaccines and immunomonitoring in clinical trials. She collaborates with several research groups across Africa in TB vaccine clinical trials.   Most recently, Helen has been leading the coordination of COVID-19 drug trials within Oxford and nationally and is now leading a programme to establish a controlled human infection model with SARS CoV2 which will allow the evaluation of protective immunity.



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