Website Innovate UK KTN

Purpose of the Role

To deliver knowledge transfer and other activities aimed at stimulating innovation by promoting the use of Design in key sectors, technologies or cross-cutting themes with potential to grow the UK economy and deliver positive change.

This role will play a key part in identifying opportunities where design will play in key role in stimulating and delivering innovations and connecting the opportunities to make an impact and translate UK Potential into commercial reality.

On a day-to-day basis, you will engage with high-growth businesses to understand their innovation needs, the role design plays and direct them towards public and private finance, potential commercial and academic partners, and other opportunities to support their growth.

This includes leading the design and delivery of first-class initiatives, including design strategy development, events, the creation and publication of thought leadership media content, overseeing the marketing and communications strategy and outputs and managing P&L at a project level.

You will contribute to Innovate UK KTN’s success, working with colleagues on cross-sector collaboration projects, meeting Innovate UK KTN KPIs, supporting the development of bids and proposals and engaging with Innovate UK, UKRI and other relevant government departments, research councils, and leadership bodies around the UK and globally.

Roles & Responsibilities

  • Lead and be a team member who supports innovation and business growth in the use of Design and, in particular, leading the ongoing delivery of the strategic objectives of the Design Innovation Network and contributing to other key aspects of Innovate UK KTN’s Work Plan where Design input is required.
  • Work with senior leaders (internally and externally) to think and act innovatively and creatively, especially with regards to the role of design in innovation.
  • Deliver and realise the Innovate UK Design in Innovation Strategy, in partnership with Innovate UK counterparts. Engage across the Innovate UK KTN to stimulate cross-sector collaboration and support colleagues.
  • Identify key opportunities (sector, technology or challenge based) for design to have significant impact and work closely with industry, government, and policy stakeholders to address strategic silos.
  • Work with your Head of team to translate strategy into business decisions and plans for Innovate UK KTN design team projects and plans. Deliver key business metrics agreed with line manager, and to track progress, capturing outcomes and success stories.
  • Develop a broad network of strategically aligned contacts and building senior level partnerships. Using your network of contacts to provide industry and government intelligence.
  • Influencing strategies around future projects and priorities by using industry and government knowledge and contacts. Directly engage with businesses providing support through access to investment and making new connections and collaborations.
  • Engage businesses with the UK research and innovation assets (including Catapults and Research Centres) and engage with business communities through our networks and sector development growth projects.
  • Undertake reporting obligations in line with Innovate UK KTN goals for impact measurement and take responsibility for complex and new areas, scoping out the challenge and defining knowledge transfer activities to meet a defined outcome.



  • Experience in business environments that span a range of functions including R&D, innovation and business development and growth.
  • Deep understanding of design disciplines appropriate for innovation across multiple sectors, technology areas and challenge themes including planet-centred design, systems-aware design, and inclusive design.
  • Demonstrable knowledge of and first-hand experience working with innovation processes and design in innovation.
  • Managing and maintaining oversight of project budgets, expenditure, and targets.
  • Capturing and analysing the impacts of Design Innovation and in particular the outputs of the Design Innovation Network related activities and projects.
  • Experience planning, coordinating, and delivering complex and innovative programmes of activity that require multi-stakeholder buy in and commitment.
  • Experience facilitating conversations and workshops to deliver meaningful outcomes.
  • Experience of integrating government policies and research and innovation strategies into practice.


  • Thorough understanding of the industry; strong personal network of senior figures in many companies and demonstrable reputation for representing business at conferences and workshops.
  • Demonstrable leadership in working with (and stimulating) senior leaders to act innovatively and creatively.
  • Leadership in key areas of Design (or equivalent) with excellent links into key UK research centres and Design Practices.
  • Track record in knowledge transfer and innovation, demonstrating the impact of such experience.
  • An ability to switch between strategic and operational levels of thinking and delivery quickly and seamlessly.
  • Leadership of teams of people, through projects involving innovation, leading with inclusive clear decisions, using judgement and evidence and taking responsibility.
  • Curiosity and openness to changes and learning.
  • Commercially aware – acting on information to improve strategies (internally and externally).
  • Team player with good relationship building and influencing skills; enjoys working in a collaborative manner in an open, honest, and diverse environment.
  • Adept at influencing and persuading. Adaptability and openness to work in new emerging business niches and across other relevant business sectors
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to communicate confidently and build effective relationships.
  • Results orientated and demonstrated delivery capability including for complex projects. Ability to communicate complex ideas clearly and persuasively across multi-disciplinary teams and stakeholders, explaining complicated matters simply.
  • Ability to deliver outcomes to agreed expectations and timelines.
  • High level of IT literacy.


  • This role has a salary between £46,000 – £50,000 pa depending on experience.
  • 28 days annual leave plus 8 bank holidays.
  • Enhanced Pension Plan.
  • Life Assurance.
  • Employee Assistance Programme.
  • Cycle to Work Scheme.
  • Wider Wallet employee benefits high street discounts scheme.
  • Opportunities for continuous professional development as part of our Talent & Development Programme.

This role is a maternity cover up to 12 months.

This advert will close on Wednesday 30th November 2022 at 5pm, though some circumstances may require us to close earlier, so early application is advised.

First stage interviews to be held w/c 5th December.

Second stage interviews to be held w/c 12th December.

Please apply by submitting a tailored cover letter outlining your suitability with specifics relating to the requirements of the role, and your CV outlining your experience.

The postholder will be home based or out of our London, Harwell or Edinburgh offices with frequent UK travel.

Applicants must have the existing and ongoing right to work in the UK without restrictions as sponsorship for visas is not provided. Unfortunately, owing to the high number of applications received, we can only provide feedback to applicants selected for interview.

Should you wish to discuss this opportunity further, please contact the Recruitment Team by email to

Innovate UK KTN strives to be a diverse and inclusive place where we can all be ourselves. We welcome everyone to apply, especially those individuals who are underrepresented in the industry: people of colour, LGBTQ+ community, women, disabled people, people of any age or family status. We know that diversity makes us stronger and we strive to create a working environment that is inclusive, and ensures everyone can be heard and valued for their contributions.

We do not discriminate on the basis of race, nationality, ethnic origin, religion or belief, sexual orientation, age, citizenship, marital or family status, disability, sex, gender identity or expression, or any other legally protected status. We are committed to removing barriers for individuals with conditions, illnesses or disabilities and we will ensure that individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable adjustments to participate in the job application or interview process, and in their future role.

If you would like to request any reasonable adjustment, for any part of the recruitment process (including application), please let us know by emailing

Please submit applications by 5pm, 30/11/2022

Apply Here