MRE 2020: Programme and First Speakers Announced

Posted on: 06/11/2019

The first details of the MRE 2020 Programme have been released with Sir Mark Walport opening proceedings and a seminar from UKCPN being confirmed.

What you can expect from MRE 2020


With just over 3 months to go until KTN’s biggest materials event of the year, Materials Research Exchange 2020, we’re delighted to now reveal the first details of the programme.


Sir Mark Walport, Chief Executive of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), will formally open MRE 2020 and will provide the Welcome address. The other confirmed keynote speakers include Dr. Ian Campbell (Interim Executive Chair at Innovate UK), Dr. Alicia Greated (CEO, KTN), Prof. Philip Withers (Regius Professor For Materials, University of Manchester), and Simon Edmonds (Deputy Executive Chair/Chief Business Officer, Innovate UK). Over the two days of MRE2020 you will be meeting a large part of the materials community under one roof. You will have the opportunity to walk around the exhibition and meet the wide array of novel materials innovators and research groups.


What’s on offer for delegates and exhibitors?

  • Hear engaging talks from researchers, innovators, investors and industry, presenting case studies on successful commercialisation of materials working in collaboration with academic researchers.
  • Participate in masterclass sessions on IP, R&D Tax Credit
  • Pitchfest: receive training on how to be pitch-ready to successfully present your case to investors.
  • Hear and debate the scope of current developments in advanced materials across key supply chains and through different sectors, including the impact of emerging digital technologies such as Block Chains.
  • Hear from policy makers with discussions and updates on relevant Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) support for businesses and academia.
  • Seminars on metamaterials and 2D materials.

Photo galleries are not available for content from the previous KTN website: we apologise for this.

Outline of Programme

Wednesday 19th February 2020

08:00 Doors open for exhibitors

10.00 Doors open for delegates – registration

10.10 VIP walk-around and photo-call

11.00 Plenary Session – chaired by Sue Dunkerton OBE (Director at KTN)

  • Welcome Address by Sir Mark Walport, Chief Executive, UKRI
  • Keynote addresses from Dr Ian Campbell, Interim Executive Chair, Innovate UK, and senior academic and industry representatives

12.30 VIP Lunch / Photocall /Tour of Exhibition

13.00 1-2-1 Meetings & Networking

13.30 – 17.30 Parallel Workshops & Seminars

17.30 – 18.00 Exhibition and Networking

18.00 – 20.00 Evening Reception


Thursday 20th February 2020

08.30 Doors open for exhibitors

09.00 Doors open for delegates

10.00 VIP walk-around and photo-call

10.30 Plenary Session

  • Prizes and Awards – Keynote addresses from Simon Edmonds, Deputy Executive Chair/Chief Business Officer, Innovate UK and Dr Alicia Greated, Chief Executive, KTN

11.00– 16.30 Parallel Workshops & Seminars

16.30 – 17.00 1-2-1 Meetings & Networking

17.00 Exhibition close

UK Circular Plastics Network Seminar

UK Circular Plastics Network (UKCPN) will be running a seminar on Day 2 titled ‘Packaging of the Future: Implications of recycled/novel materials and food contact’.

Innovations in the food packaging sector are at the forefront of the government-funded £60m Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging Challenge. UKCPN has recognised the need for innovators, entrepreneurs and materials experts who may be looking at new and novel materials, and those with recycled content, to understand the implications of their innovations with respect to standards, food contact safety and consumer considerations; may they be dietary, allergenicity of religious factors. You can attend this valuable session where three senior speakers will inform you of the current situation and considerations to be taken in this space.



  • Tim Chandler, Senior Scientific Officer, Food Standards Agency
  • Dr. Emma Bradley, Head of Programme – Food Quality & Safety, Fera Science Ltd.
  • Sara Walton, Sector Lead – Food, BSI

Further Information

MRE 2020 is an exhibition, investor showcase and conference, which will demonstrate ground-breaking new materials developments and their manufacturing processes. Network with over 1500 delegates, meet key funding and decision makers and attend targeted seminars and keynote addresses. Taking place on 18th – 20th February 2020 at the Business Design Centre in London, the event is organised by KTN and Innovate UK and will showcase the wealth of UK materials research. MRE 2020 is headline sponsored by the Henry Royce Institute and supported by EPSRC and Dstl.


So far confirmed exhibitors cover the full spectrum of the materials sphere, including The University of Oxford, Imperial College London, Indestructible Specialist Coatings Manufacture, The Future Photonics Hub, The University of Cambridge, UKCPN, the UK Atomic Energy Authority and The University of Edinburgh. You can read the list of confirmed exhibitors here.


We’ve updated our website to help you plan your visit to MRE, including key timings and location information. If you’re looking for hotel options then we have collated a list of accommodation options within close proximity to the event. To see more information on travel and accommodation please click here.


Tickets are now on sale and available here.


Please visit the Materials Research Exchange website for further information.

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