Dr Mike Holmes 

KCMC Academic Development Support Manager

Dr Mike Holmes is the Academic Development Support Manager at the KCMC. After his PhD in surface chemistry, he had a wide and varied career in the chemical industry and in knowledge transfer supporting the development of collaborative R&D projects between companies and UK universities.

What do you do at the KCMC?

My role is to work with the KCMC Director Dr John Conti-Ramsden on a number of medium to long term KCMC strategic activities. These activities include (1) identifying and developing options for increasing the range of materials chemistry expertise that the KCMC can offer companies and (2) supporting the creation of robust and sustainable mechanisms for translating research discoveries from universities into Catapults, and in particular the High Value Manufacturing Catapult (HVMC), thus helping companies realise commercial applications.

What are your strengths?

I have deep scientific understanding, developed through 20 years in science and technology roles industry and 13 years in knowledge transfer, so I’d like to think I have a great deal of experience to contribute to helping us achieve these KCMC strategic developments.

Before taking up the role of Academic Development Support Manager I was the KCMC Knowledge Transfer Manager for the University of Manchester. The experience gained in this role together with the hosting of the KCMC by CPI (CPI, a member of the HVMC) enables me to make a significant contribution to development of the mechanism the UK needs to achieve more effective translation from discovery to innovation in high value manufacturing.

Why do you enjoy working at the KCMC?

I love both the breadth and depth of the role – and the opportunity to make a difference. For the academics, we help them to demonstrate the impact of their work, which is an important priority for all universities. And for the companies, we open new opportunities for them to access the expertise and facilities they need to help them drive forward their R&D projects.

What area of materials science excites you?

Materials chemistry has historically made major contributions to the development of new materials. Looking ahead I can see enormous potential for the KCMC to continue to help companies develop and exploit new advanced materials. For example there are major opportunities for new advanced material to meet a number of functional requirements in demanding environments.

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Dr Mike Holmes