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Early career and on-going training for photonics companies.

Large-scale industries like pharma and engineering benefit from established, graduate recruitment schemes, on-the-job training, professional accreditation and networking opportunities.

The photonics industry, although rapidly growing and at the forefront of many high-impact, new technology developments, is fragmented by comparison. It comprises many small companies or start-ups that may struggle to support early career training and on-going training. This is a disadvantage when competing for the best talent and developing staff.

Is it possible for business schools, industry bodies or universities to address this with some underpinning courses and training schemes that allow engineers in small businesses, equivalent career development opportunities? Perhaps a centrally run graduate recruitment, development and training scheme for a collective of small photonics businesses?

If a group of photonics companies (or technology companies more broadly) share a common vision on this, then I believe that Cooperative Development Scotland may be able to help them take the idea forward.

http://cdsblog.co.uk/collaboration

Skills Development Scotland and/or Scottish Enterprise may also be able to help to some extent, but the first step has to be getting a group of companies to develop the idea in a discussion paper/ draft proposal.

There is certainly a lot of options via the Doctoral route such as CDT however graduate scheme development would be beneficial. Industry in partnership with the universities at an early stage) is crucial. Site visits by students, presentations, guest speaker slots etc all in collaboration with industry partners, whether large or small.

Market readiness

Technology maturity

Economics

Industrial environment

Political support