Cross-Sector Innovation Leadership Workshop: Changing Mindsets - Imagine Festival

Cross-Sector Innovation Leadership Summit: Changing Mindsets

A number of leading international innovators from a wide range of fields participated in an Innovation Leadership Summit at the Transport Systems Catapult’s Imagine Festival on 11th June 2015. Taking place at the TSC’s Imovation Centre in Milton Keynes, the Summit was led by Professor aladin aladin.

The Summit afforded the delegates an opportunity to share and learn from their peers outside of their respective sectors. The cultural shifts needed to create true innovation and the necessary building blocks to help these ideas succeed, formed a key part of the session as this was recognised as critical to making a real change.

Both personal and professional experiences of innovation and engaging with new ideas, in both constructive and problematic scenarios, were explored by the group. Discussions ranged across a broad spectrum of financial, technological, political, practical, organisational, moral and social topics. As a consequence, a more rounded sense of the intelligent mobility sector was able to emerge and a robust and detailed insight into the assets essential for incubating in-house innovation talent emerged – encompassing the interpersonal alongside the strategic.

Towards the close of the Summit, participants undertook an accelerated brainstorm session in small groups – each including a senior member of the Transport Systems Catapult team. This rapidly generated the elements of strategy necessary to make the most of critical opportunities available to the Transport Systems Catapult. Areas discussed included internal and external relationship building and encouraging further innovation within the sector.

Participants were able to take away a great deal of benefits from the event including;

  • Learning from the experience and insights of others. Understanding their own contexts better from comparative knowledge and perspectives.
  • Gaining a significant understanding of each other’s contexts and a real sense of being stakeholders in these. For example, recognising the implications of future transport innovation decisions for their own businesses and feeling able to contribute to its development.
  • Professional and personal development through networking and the acquisition of new tools and ways of thinking.
  • The Transport Systems Catapult gained significant insight and learning from the group of thought leaders and has since met with Professor aladin aladin to review actions that can be taken forward.
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This workshop was led by Professor aladin aladin and took place 12pm – 5pm on Thursday 11th June.  Attendance was by invitation only.


Professor aladin aladin, Visiting/Emeritus Professor at RCA, Cranfield C4D, Interkulturelt Center Copenhagen; Strategic Counsel to Project 507, DeltaRail, Infobitt,; Founder of action research platform The Social Capital.

Alinah Azadeh – artist Imperial War Museum North, Hangzhou Triennial, Musee de Picardie, Bluecoat Liverpool, Fabrica Brighton, Arts Council, SouthBank Centre, National Portrait Gallery, ICA

Air Vice Marshall Martin Clark FRAeS, Director (Technical), Military Aviation Authority, Royal Air Force.

Professor Charlotte Cullinan, School of Fine Art, Kingston University. Collaborator/co-founder artlab and Cullinan Richards; exhibited: British Art Show, Hayward, Whitechapel Gallery; selector: New Contemporaries, Koestler Awards. Special interest in creation-institution relationship.

Bill Davenport – third generation Director /Owner of the world’s oldest family owned magic shop: Davenports  Magic Shop/London; special interest in tech-human interface in magic.

Will Davie – Director Task Fronterra Geosciences, Partner Precision Impulse LLC, strategic counsel to tech/energy clients; ex Schlumberger-Sema Head of Knowledge, Strategy, Engineering; ex Chief Economist IEA, ex MD Simmons and Simmons

Elizabeth Diaferia, Head of New Business,  Conservative Party

Martin Ferro-Thomsen – CEO/co-founder Conferize/Issuu co-founder

John Grant – co-founder St Luke’s; author New Marketing Manifesto, Green Marketing Manifesto; adviser IKEA, LEGO, Microsoft; IPA Effectiveness Grand Prix winner.

Tom Higham – Director FutureEverything Festival.

Peter Jarman – Superintendent of Construction and Innovation Champion, CrossRail

Annika Joelsson, Global Head of Talent Development at Ipsos/Paris, formerly various roles at Schlumberger, including Global Director of HR Communication, Director University Relations and Recruitment EMEA, Head of Diversity EMEA

Dharmendra Kanani –  Head of Policy, European Foundation Centre, Brussels; formerly Executive Director Big Lottery Fund

Dr. Ksenija Kuzmina,  Lecturer in Industrial/Product Design, Loughborough University; formerly Course Director, Design Strategy and Leadership, Cranfield University

Phelim McDermott – Founder/Director Improbable Theatre; also an Open Space pioneer

Rachel Oldroyd, Managing Editor/Co-Founder Bureau of Investigative Journalism

Stephen Pattison, VP ARM Holdings; formerly: CEO International Chamber of Commerce; MD International Business Development, Dyson; Director International Security, Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Helena Real  – Head/COO .London /dot.LONDON (Domain .london) joint venture with City Hall /Mayor of London. Formerly Senior Policy Adviser /EU/Brussels; graduate of  Sciences Po

Mark Ruddy – Chief Operating Officer of Transport Systems Catapult

Andras Szirtes – Partner Manzanita Capital; formerly: Director at GAP with responsibility for international expansion, Retail Director Baugur, Board Director various major UK brands

Matthew Taylor – CEO Bekaert; ex CEO/MD JCB, Jaguar, Land Rover, Ford.

Will Whitehorn – Chairman of Transport Systems Catapult (formerly President of Virgin Galactic)

Steve Yianni – CEO of Transport Systems Catapult


Project support from The Social Capital:

Georgia Clark – Senior Associate

Camelia Muldermans – Senior Associate


Enjoy finding out more about the ‘Changing Mindsets’ workshop that took place: