Aston University Vice-Chancellor retains UK Business Ambassador role

Professor Julia King

Aston's Vice-Chancellor will continue to promote the UK’s low carbon businesses overseas as part of UK Trade & Industry’s (UKTI) re-launched Business Ambassador Network.

Professor Julia King was originally appointed to the Network in December 2009 in recognition of her expertise in low carbon technologies. The announcement that she will continue in the role was made yesterday in a speech by the Prime Minister, David Cameron, in which he announced the expansion of the Business Ambassador Network, from 24 representatives to 31.

Professor King said, ‘It is a great honour to be asked to represent the UK’s low carbon businesses. Reducing carbon emissions is absolutely critical for the future of this planet, and the UK has a major role to play in developing the technology to make this happen. I am proud that the UK is taking a leading role in addressing climate change mitigation, and see this as a major opportunity for business.

‘In my position as Low Carbon Business Ambassador, I will be doing all I can to encourage trade links between UK businesses and overseas partners, so that we can stimulate exporting and encourage inward investment, and also contribute to the adoption of sustainable technologies all over the world.’

Professor King is one of just three academics in the Business Ambassador Network, along with Lord Darzi, from Imperial College London, and Professor Malcolm Grant, Provost of University College London.

She commented, ‘It is an honour to represent the Higher Education sector in the Network. I see my appointment as a testament to the impact Aston University has on business and industry, through its research and its knowledge transfer. I look forward to being able to promote some of the innovative developments in the West Midlands through my ambassadorial role, where we have a number of companies at the forefront of low carbon automotive carbon technologies, such as Modec and Zytek.’

Business ambassadors’ roles typically involve representing the UK in high level meetings, leading missions, hosting overseas ministers and inward missions, lobbying, briefing ministers and ambassadors, and policy advice.