Technology family workshops: Engineering Biology

The UK is a world-leader in engineering biology, register for Innovate UK’s Engineering Biology event to learn, input and move this new ‘bioeconomy’ beyond the current focus on the therapeutics ecosystem.

Event Details


14.00 - 16.00



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The UK, along with the rest of the world, has faced exceptional challenges over the past 18 months. Our society, our economy, and our livelihoods have all been affected. In recovering from the pandemic, we must build on this country’s innovative foundations to create a robust and agile economy that works for everyone and is fit for future generations. Investment in innovation will be critical to achieving this, and to building a greener, healthier and more prosperous future for the UK.

In July 2021, the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy launched the UK Innovation Strategy. Part of this strategy was the identification of 7 technology families where the UK has globally competitive R&D and industrial strength. The 7 families are as follows:

  • Advanced Materials and Manufacturing
  • AI, Digital and Advanced Computing
  • Bioinformatics and Genomics
  • Engineering Biology
  • Electronics, Photonics and Quantum
  • Energy and Environment Technologies
  • Robotics and Smart Machines

Innovate UK and Innovate UK KTN are hosting a series of deep dive workshops, which aim to look at those technologies within these families which are still at a very early stage, or only just emerging.

Join us on 9th May at 2pm for the second of these sessions: Engineering biology. Engineering Biology exploits the recent convergence of physical sciences and engineering with biology. This has led to the application of engineering technologies and principles to the design and fabrication of biological components and systems, enabling innovations like plastic-free packaging, improved silk fibres for sports clothing, and life-saving therapies.

Examples of promising applications include accelerated drug development, stronger, lighter, biodegradable alternatives to today’s polymers, and new tools to transform waste into biofuel and other useful products.

This group of technologies also includes nature-inspired solutions (biomimetics) that lead to the creation of new materials, applications and processes across a range of sectors. The benefits of engineering biology are already being felt across the UK economy and will continue to create exciting business growth opportunities as well as helping us reach our climate goals.

Agenda (subject to change)

  • Welcome introduction and purpose
  • Overview of technologies and Q&A
  • Futurist perspective
  • Breakout discussions
  • Close

Why people might attend?

  • To hear about the latest cutting edge of the technology and thought leadership in a technology area
  • To input to how this technology could develop long term
  • To understand how the future of other technologies could impact the future of this technology or vice-versa – how this technology might impact other areas
  • To learn more about how Innovate UK does Foresight / Horizon Scanning.
  • To input to how this technology could develop long term, including their ideas or concerns about it

Register to get the opportunity to hear from our panel of expert speakers on important topics and ask questions about this technological family. You will also have the opportunity to discuss the topic with other attendees and make connections during our breakout sessions after the session.


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