The University of Southampton

Former IET Vice-President appointed as Royal Society Entrepreneur in Residence

Published: 13 February 2020
Virginia Hodge, Royal Society Entrepreneur in Residence

Enterprise expert Virginia Hodge will help turn Electronics and Computer Science research into commercial success as a Royal Society Entrepreneur in Residence at the University of Southampton.

The former Vice-President of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) will be embedded in the School’s teaching and research activities while serving as a Resident Mentor at the on-campus Future Worlds startup accelerator over the next two years.

She is one of two Royal Society Entrepreneurs in Residence announced at the University in the latest intake of the prestigious scheme, joining GlaxoSmithKline’s Dr Duncan Holmes who will work with Experimental and Clinical Sciences.

Fifteen entrepreneurs, senior scientists and business leaders have been appointed across the UK this winter and will now be funded to spend one day per week increasing knowledge and awareness of cutting edge industrial science, research and innovation.

Professor Paul Lewin, Head of Electronics and Computer Science (ECS), says: “We are delighted that Virginia has been appointed as a Royal Society Entrepreneur in Residence. She will provide commercial expertise that will enhance our education and research activities and we are looking forward to working together.”

Virginia has extensive industrial experience of systems and software engineering in a career spanning defence, safety and aviation. She is a Trustee of Foothold, the IET Benevolent Fund and joined Future Worlds as a Resident Mentor in 2019.

“I’m delighted to be appointed Entrepreneur in Residence by the Royal Society,” she says. “During my time as a mentor at Future Worlds, I’ve greatly enjoyed getting to know the University of Southampton community and meeting entrepreneurially-minded staff and students doing world-changing things. The University has a brilliant culture of enterprise and I’m looking forward to expanding upon my work with Future Worlds and ECS to further promote and support entrepreneurship.”

Last summer, Virginia joined a panel of experts at the University of Southampton as they discussed the barriers to women’s participation in the worlds of engineering and enterprise.

Ben Clark, Future Worlds Director, says: “It’s fantastic news that Virginia has been recognised by the Royal Society with this award. She has been an invaluable member of the Future Worlds community through bringing her expertise to many of the startups and spinouts in our network. I’m thrilled that the Royal Society is enabling the furthering of this impact and look forward to more opportunities to work with Virginia along with the School of Electronics and Computer Science to further accelerate the commercial potential within ECS and the Future Worlds network.”

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