John Baker

Knowledge Transfer Manager

Dr John Baker is a Knowledge Transfer Manager at the KCMC working with University of Manchester. Following a PhD and Post Doc in Heterogeneous Catalysis he worked for bp for 30 years. During this period, he has had a varied career, including research, refining, commercial & trading, innovation, technology foresight and building scientific networks. His last role was as a programme manager for the bp-International Centre for Advanced Materials.

What do you do at the KCMC?

My role involves building relationships between academia and industry. Working with the University of Manchester, I’m there to make the connections and then to oil the cogs to set up collaborations, ensure that they run smoothly and that each party benefits. My aim is to create positive and enduring relationships.

Through an appreciation of what drives the university and how it operates, I provide insights and support to businesses. Additionally, I help academia understand business perspectives in university collaborations. I also have the advantage of being part of the CPI which can provide expertise and support for scale up and commercialisation of promising materials.

What are your strengths?

My wide range of experience within a large multinational company and of various university collaborations. Through this experience I have an appreciation of both perspectives and understand the drivers for all parties. Key to this role is my natural instinct to build relationships & networks and make connections. 

Why do you enjoy working at the KCMC?

The Knowledge Transfer Manager role provides the opportunity to make a real difference on important High Value Manufacturing challenges across a wide range of industry sectors. It is also a great learning experience with opportunity to work with some of the best scientists from the UK.

What area of materials chemistry and materials science excites you?

I am fascinated by bio-inspired materials. Nature has had millions of years of evolution to develop amazing solutions and adaptations to the challenges of life. I believe we are still scratching the surface of what we can learn and use.

John Baker