This is my first journal entry as the new director of the centre. I am really excited by the prospect of getting to know all of the students, academics and industrial partners involved in the centre and finding out more about the projects and people we've funded. Browsing through the project pages it is clear that there are is an amazing range of projects underway and some fantastic early successes. Marek (with the help and support of Philippe, Tiziana, John and Karen) has done an excellent job of getting the centre up and running and creating the beautiful new space that forms the heart of the centre. However, as Marek said at the end of his last journal post, we are only at the beginning. There is still a lot more to do and I can't wait to get going.
We've just added a journal tab to each project - the point of this is so that each project can describe its journey as that unfolds. I plan to use this space to share the experience of putting together the centre and the work that goes on through the directors and administrators. Let me at least kick off with this - we're trying to bring industry and academia together, getting the best out of each. We're off to a fantastic start - when I browse through the project pages and look at the endeavours we've funded, and the people involved, it is truly inspiring and exciting. But it is not always easy - the cultures are very different, and we need to break down those differences. The keys to early success in a project are communication and developing a well formulated plan - we've found that it is very important to hold monthly meetings (if only telecons) involving the academic and industrial supervisors, and the students, and that having a clear plan of phased deliverables, scope (what's in, what's out), milestones and overall objectives is vital. If everyone knows what they're shooting for, and when, the project flies.
It has been quite a ride already - and we are only at the beginning.