Supporting innovation ecosystems



About Spin Up Science



Spin Up Science Ltd was incorporated in 2018 to champion entrepreneurial scientists, inspire future innovators and establish ecosystems for technology commercialisation.  We work to connect scientists and engineers across academic institutions with leaders in industry to foster a scientific innovation ecosystem through training programs, invited talks, technology showcases, and hands-on opportunities to work alongside enterprises.

Our goal is to support the development of scientists and engineers as leaders and innovators, while strengthening  the connection between innovation in the public and private sector. We want to see more bold entrepreneurs, more world-leading companies, and more discoveries reaching the marketplace.


The Team


Dr Ben Miles



Dr Maddy Nichols



Ric Barnes

Marketing & Media


Dr Ben Miles - CEO

Dr Ben Miles founded Spin Up Science to champion the work of scientists and entrepreneurs translating their research into the real world and to connect researchers with the role models and skill sets necessary to start their own companies. His work within Bristol UK, is supporting the creation of a scientific innovation ecosystem spanning quantum, material, and life science start-ups.

Dr Sarah Jelbert - Program Director

Before moving to Bristol to join our team, Dr Jelbert was an experienced post-doc, with a background in cognition and behavioural sciences. In her academic career she studied, researched or lectured at a range of the UK’s leading universities, including Oxford, Cambridge and St Andrews, as well as the University of Auckland in New Zealand. At Spin Up Science, Sarah leads and develops fun and effective programs that help expand researchers’ awareness of the range of opportunities available to them.

Dr Maddy Nichols - Operations and Events

During her time at the University of Bristol, Maddy found that she particularly enjoyed being involved in events and outreach where she got to discuss science with people of all ages. From running science demos in a muddy field at festivals, to discussing the science behind science-fiction in The Cosmic Shed podcast, she loves playing a role in making scientific research and discoveries more accessible to the public. Maddy works to connect everyone with the exciting developments and opportunities within Bristol’s innovation ecosystem.

Ric Barnes - Marketing and Communications

Previously at the University of Exeter and Coastal Carolina University, Ric’s background is in the field of biological sciences. With a deep-rooted passion for storytelling, science communication struck a cord with Ric when undertaking shark conservation work off the muggy shores of South Carolina, USA. Ric is responsible for spreading the message of the innovation that is being realised in our ecosystem, across Bristol and beyond.



What is an innovation ecosystem?

The goal of effective technology clusters is to support the translation of research into innovation.  Effective ecosystems often have at their foundation a university or research body engaged in scientific or technical discovery upon which organisational pillars supports these ideas to maturing into innovation.

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Pillars of an effective ecosystem

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Innovation facilities

Necessary  facilities essential in getting scientific ideas off the ground quickly.

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Talented people are the heart of any strong innovation ecosystem. 

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Effective capital

Patient and informed capital is the fuel that drives deep tech development. 


Our guiding principles


Be bold

Technology development is progressing faster than any other period in history as world changing scientific innovations emerge from quantum computing to personalised medicine. We want to support inventors to be bold, to seek to tackle big problems, not just with in the laboratory but out into the world.  Now, more than ever, it is critical that scientists are empowered with the skills, knowledge and connections to make great leaps forward.



Develop collaboratively

Build together, particularly in ecosystems.  Universities, local governments, professional services, community groups, and innovation centres all play critical roles in supporting communities of scientific innovators.  By developing a culture of working together, we build bigger better programs that connect disparate pockets of innovation.  We reach more people and deliver greater impact while sharing in success. We are always looking for interested and engaged partners to develop new initiatives.



Give back

Within the the community, some ventures sky rocket while others take a while to find their feet, yet all have stories that present insight and experience for the next generation of innovators as they navigate their own journey. These stories have an enormous capacity to empower, to establish, and to grow new and exciting ventures. By sharing guidance, war-stories, and successes, the innovation pipeline is strengthened.  We want to build scientific innovation communities that support new comers as well as old, to encourage reinvesting in the community and provide the rocket fuel to launch future enterprises.


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Empower scientists, change the world, start in Bristol

With the opening of Unit DX, the Bristol Robotics Laboratory, Future Space, the Health Tech Hub, and the newly announced Quantum Technology Innovation Centre at the University of Bristol’s Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus, the city of Bristol is positioning itself as a hub of science and technology commercialisation. Essential to the successful utilisation of these infrastructure projects is the development of a thriving connected ecosystem to support cutting-edge companies working with deep tech and to inspire the next generation of innovators to engage in research translation. 

However, across the UK, there is a high attrition rate of scientists and engineers leaving their field leading to a shortage in the high tech labour force.  A publication by the Royal Society estimates that 53% of postgraduate researchers completing a PhD abandon their discipline within one year of graduating; a trend driven by the low availability of academic positions and the reluctance to enter industrial placements through the traditional graduate-scheme pathways.

Preparing those at the forefront of technology development with the skill sets necessary to interact with businesses empowers scientists and engineers to reach their full potential and helps build game-changing companies. 


- Dr Benjamin Miles, CEO Spin Up Science