Scotland has been at the forefront of innovation, design and development since the Scottish Enlightenment. And now, following the result of the independence referendum, and at the beginning of a crucial period for the future of Scotland, a new task force will consider the challenges, opportunities and competitiveness for the future of the Scottish research base.

Co-chaired by Rob Woodward (Chief Executive, STV Group plc) and Professor Sir Ian Diamond (Principal & Vice-Chancellor, University of Aberdeen), Growing Value: Scotland will bring together leading experts and leaders from across industry and academia to identify and prioritise actions specific to Scotland that will enhance the value of publicly-funded research and business-university collaboration.

Growing Value Scotland builds on the previous work of the UK-wide Growing Value Task Force – led by David Eyton (Global Head of Research & Development, BP) and Professor Dame Shirley Pearce (then Vice-Chancellor, Loughborough University). Growing Value: Scotland will publish its final findings and recommendations in January 2016.

Rob Woodward, Chief Executive of STV Group plc and co-chair of the Task Force said:

“As Scotland renegotiates its place in the Union ensuring economic sustainability is vital. Scotland and the rest of the UK will only preserve our key role in the world economy if we can lead the way in research and development.”

“Businesses and academia have much to offer each other in terms of talent, research, and expertise and this task force will help to find ways to improve those interactions in Scotland.”

Professor Sir Ian Diamond, Principal & Vice-Chancellor of University of Aberdeen and co-chair of the Task Force said:

“The Scottish research and development landscape exists in an incredibly competitive world. It’s only by identifying its strengths and weaknesses as well as the opportunities it has to expand that we will be able to ensure the success of it and the wider Scottish economy.

“Academia has much to learn from the world of business and vice versa to make sure that graduates are leaving with the right skills, companies have access to the most exciting research and we are creating the innovative businesses that will ensure the growth of the Scottish economy.”

Dr David Docherty, Chief Executive of the National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB) added:

“This is a time of unprecedented change in Scotland and it’s vital that we have a full understanding of the shape of Scottish research and development in order to plan for the future.

“It is crucial that higher education and business works together to understand the opportunities that exist for them and their students and employees.”

Michael Russell MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Education, said:

“Scotland is globally recognised for pioneering research and seizing the economic benefits that can be created through true collaboration. We’ve clearly seen from our Innovation Centres, which bring industry and academia together, the potential to not only generate investment, but to further extend the reach of research.

“This new Task Force can play a vital role in supporting the excellent work already being done through Innovation Scotland to enhance university-business engagement, further highlighting the excellent research base available here in Scotland and encouraging even greater collaboration in the future.”


Growing Value: Scotland Task Force Members: 

Task Force Co-Chairs

Professor Sir Ian Diamond

Principal and Vice-Chancellor

University of Aberdeen

Rob Woodward

Chief Executive

STV Group

Executive Group

Stephen Blackman

Group Economist

Royal Bank of Scotland

Dr. David Docherty

Chief Executive


Professor Peter Downes

Principal and Vice-Chancellor

University of Dundee

Professor Anton Muscatelli

Principal and Vice-Chancellor

University of Glasgow

Steering Group

Louise Alford

HR Director, Customer Service Group


Robert Calderwood

Chief Executive

NHS Greater Glasgow

Dr. Alasdair Cameron

Executive Director


Professor Jon Cooper

Vice- Principal Innovation & Knowledge Exchange

University of Glasgow

Dr. Iain Gray

Chief Executive

Innovate UK

Professor Paul Hagan

Director Research & Innovation

Scottish Funding Council

Dr. Bridget McConnell

Chief Executive of Culture and Sport

Glasgow City Council

Professor Andrea Nolan

Principal and Vice Chancellor

Edinburgh Napier University

Sir Timothy O’Shea

Principal and Vice-Chancellor

University of Edinburgh

Professor Rick Rylance

Chief Executive



RCUK Executive Group

Tim Summers

Group Manager Digital Networking

Freescale EMEA

Chris van der Kuyl

Chief Executive


Dr. Rebekah Widdowfield

Head of Higher Education

Scottish Government

Charlotte Wright

Sector and Business Development Director

Highlands and Islands Enterprise

About NCUB:

The National Centre for Universities and Business (NCUB) brings together leaders from across higher education and business to tackle issues of share interest and broker collaboration across the United Kingdom. From facilitating collaborative R&D, to developing the entrepreneurial and employability skills of students at all stages of their education, NCUB is working to support UK business and higher education in a competitive global market.

NCUB’s Leadership Council includes many of the UK’s most successful businesses and universities leaders. View the Leadership Council at 

For further information on the work of the task force, please contact Sally Devine, on 0207 383 7667 or by emailing