03 May 2023

The DSIT Startup Board appoints new non-executive directors in a bid to strengthen the UK’s position as a science and technology superpower

The UK Government has appointed seven high-profile science and technology leaders to the new Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT) Startup Board. These non-executive directors include the likes of astronaut Tim Peake, McLaren founder Ron Dennis, Professor of natural sciences Jason Chin (Trinity College, Cambridge), and Shonnel Malani, Managing Partner at Advent International, who will serve as lead non-executive board member.

The DSIT was established in February with a mission to cement the UK’s position as a science and technology superpower by 2030. Since then, it has announced funding of hundreds of millions of pounds for innovation accelerators, continued research into the field of life sciences and the development of laboratories, and has published strategies for growth in the artificial intelligence, quantum, and wireless infrastructure sectors.

The newly appointed non-executive board members will provide strategic guidance and insight as the department focuses on driving economic growth, creating jobs, and improving the lives of citizens through science, technology, and innovation. They will serve for nine months on an initial startup board that will nurture DSIT through its first year of existence, before a permanent board is recruited in due course.

Science and technology Secretary Michelle Donelan expressed the government’s commitment to incorporating the best and brightest minds from the science and tech worlds at every level of decision making in the government. The success of the DSIT, according to Donelan, will play a crucial role in delivering long-term economic growth, which is a priority for the UK Government.

In response to his appointment to the board, astronaut Tim Peake said that “As a former test pilot and astronaut, who has taken part in more than 250 scientific experiments for the European Space Agency and international partners, I hope to bring a wealth of experience of how science, technology and innovation are critical to both learning and development.”

The appointment of these high-profile figures to the DSIT Startup Board demonstrates the UK Government’s determination to advance the country’s science and technology leadership and agenda. It is also an opportunity for the private and public sectors to collaborate on innovative areas that will transform lives and drive economic growth across the country.

The appointment of these non-executive directors brings a wealth of experience and expertise to the DSIT, furthering the department’s ability to achieve its goal of making the UK a science and technology superpower in the coming years.