IOP Business Forum: Parliament meets science in business

16 November 2012
09:30 – 13:00
North East Technology Park Incubator, Sedgefield

Co-sponsored by Business Durham, Houses of Parliament Outreach Service and Netpark.


This event – the first in a series of IOP Business Forum meetings in Yorkshire and the North East – brought together parliamentarians, spokespersons from the Department for Innovation, Business & Skills and the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee with representatives from science-based business and industry.

The meeting was opened by Councillor Neil Foster, Portfolio Holder for Economic Regeneration, Durham County Council, and Professor Sir Peter Knight, President of the Institute of Physics. The presentations that followed provided simple, practical information on a range of topics, including:

  • the work of MPs and MEPs in representing science-based business and industry in the North East;
  • how parliament scrutinises the work of government and the opportunities for you to get involved;
  • how government departments and the work of select committees can help businesses to raise concerns and issues at a national level.

The meeting concluded with an open forum discussion chaired by Professor Sir Peter Knight. The panellists were Fiona Hall MEP, Phil Wilson MP, Dr Stephen McGinness and Tom Smyth.


Fiona Hall MEP

Member of the European Parliament for north east England

Topic: “Science in the European parliament”

Dr Stephen McGinness

Clerk to the Science & Technology Select Committee

Topic: “Engaging with parliamentary committees”

Tom Smyth

Deputy Head, Department for Business, Innovation & Skills - Yorkshire, Humber & North East team

Topic: “BIS in the North East: working for you”

Phil Wilson MP

Member of Parliament for Sedgefield

Topic: “The role of MPs in working with science-based business/industry”

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