Accelerator Technical Lead and Programme Manager


Location: Medway (Natural Resources Institute, University of Greenwich)

Closing date: Monday 17 January 2022

Reference number: 3002

The Natural Resources Institute of the University of Greenwich is offering an exciting position for a graduate with business experience to manage a Food Innovation Accelerator Programme linked to the new Medway Food Innovation Centre.

The Natural Resources Institute of the University of Greenwich is part of a consortium called Growing Kent and Medway (GKM), which is led by NIAB EMR and won a £17.8 million UKRI Strength in Places grant. The ambition of GKM is to develop a world-class agri-food innovation cluster that supports growth in technology-driven horticultural production, food & drink processing, and manufacturing. Besides, NIAB EMR and the University of Greenwich, the other research partners of this world-class consortium include the University of Kent. The industry partners include a range of significant local agri-food companies (APS Produce, Berry Gardens Growers, Chapel Down, Gusbourne Estate, Richard Hochfeld Group, Thanet Earth, Worldwide Fruit); an innovative technology integration business that operates across supply chains (Geku Automation); and a world-leading packaging company (Smurfit Kappa). GK&M is backed by strong civic and business support with partners from the Kent & Medway Economic Partnership and Locate in Kent. GK&M will drive innovation and wealth creation by stimulating a vibrant and collaborative network that enables new and existing food enterprises to develop and thrive. It connects industry with technologists and researchers to co-creatively address the innovation challenges faced by the agri-food sector and its supply chains. Over the 5-year project, a total of £5M has been allocated to a Research and Innovation Fund to support collaborative bids that would typically include commercial and research partners.

As part of the GKM project, the University of Greenwich is setting up the Medway Food Innovation Centre (MFIC) – a state of art facility to deliver step-changing food R&D solutions for industries through cutting edge research as well as excellent training and courses on food product and process development for student cohorts.

As part of the vision for the MFIC, a Food Innovation Accelerator Programme will be established to focus on promoting the growth of businesses in the Food and Drink sector in Kent. Selected businesses will be provided with expert advice and access to facilities within the Hubs established as part of GKM; these include the MFIC as well as the GreenTech Hub (crop production, NIAB EMR) and the Biotech Hub (University of Kent).  The appointed Accelerator Manager will have the main responsibility to plan, promote, establish, and manage the Food Innovation Accelerator Programme and work closely with other members of the GKM team.

The ideal candidate will have proven experience of working with and running support programmes for businesses (mentoring, incubator, accelerator programmes), excellent communication skills and an ability to inspire.

For an informal discussion about the post please contact Andy Frost, Director of Business Development and Partnerships on [email protected] or Parag Acharya, Senior Fellow in Food Innovation on [email protected].

Should you have any queries please contact the HR Recruitment Team on [email protected]

We are looking for people who can help us deliver our mission of transforming lives through inspired teaching and research, through our values.

The university welcomes people from diverse and underrepresented communities who can help the university to achieve its mission.

We do this through taking positive action such as encouraging applications from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic, disabled and LGBT+ people. As part of our commitment to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Time to Change Employer Pledge/Mentally Healthy Universities, we are committed to promoting and supporting the physical and mental health of all our staff, and removing barriers to improve inclusion.

We encourage applicants to disclose experience of mental health problems so we can support them fully during our recruitment process and make any necessary reasonable adjustments. Any information disclosed will be kept confidential and separate from the job application form.

We are making significant strides to understand and continuously improve our employees’ experience and we are committed to implementing progressive diversity talent management.

Further details and a full job description can be found at:

Closing date for applications: Monday 17 January 2022