This session, hosted by David Loughlan, covers 4 lightning talks, followed by a Q&A panel discussion. 

How ASOS’s Data Science teams adapted to the new COVID world (Reda Kechouri)
In this lightning talk, Reda Kechouri will tell the story on how ASOS’s data science teams responded to the COVID health crisis back in March/April. Beyond the initial shock, we pivoted quickly to help the business face a very volatile environment and learned key lessons when dealing with uncertainty.

On the forefront of research to keep our customer promise (Betty Schirrmeister)
Royal Mail is producing an immense amount of data on a daily basis and has become a strongly data driven company. As such the company is relying on a strong data science team to support their day to day business, but also develop new innovative solutions to keep up in an increasingly competitive market. Our data science team comprises a diverse mix of academic backgrounds keen to stay up to date with latest research and deliver high quality solutions. Academic engagement has thus far proved repeatedly to support our hypothesis driven ways of working and enabled us to use the latest research more sufficiently. Through various Master, PhD and undergrad projects we are getting an invaluable exchange of ideas between our team and academia. Academic engagement for a successful data science team should not a luxury, but a necessity.

The business of research – collaborating to accelerate impact (George MacGinnis)
A successful innovation journey involves setting out what you want to do and being clear about what more you need to know along the way. The answers reach right across academic disciplines – whether that be how to apply cutting edge technology to solve a problem, incorporating ethnographic research and inclusive design to understand what customers want or undertaking complex behavioural and economic impact analysis to understand the real-world value. The Healthy Ageing Challenge illustrates how this can work in practice, from spinning out start ups through to helping large businesses enter new markets.

Working Together to solve the Plastics Paradox (Nick Cliffe)
Plastics are essential to everyday life but the way we use them is unsustainable. An estimated eight million tonnes of plastic waste enter the world’s oceans each year; and discarded plastics contaminate vital ecosystems and threaten the food chains we rely on. Conversely, we depend upon plastic. It keeps our food and medicines safe and easy to transport; it’s in our car tyres and teabags, computers and phones, clothes and shoes. In this talk Nick will describe how UKRI-supported researchers and innovators are working together to build a sustainable plastics system.

Supported by