Robert Speight

Innovation Adviser – Australia

Robert has broad experience at the interface of academia and industry with a passion for delivering new technologies that impact on society. He is based in in Brisbane, Australia where he is Professor of Microbial Biotechnology at the Queensland University of Technology.

Originally from the UK, Robert studied chemistry at Imperial College London followed by a PhD in biochemistry from the University of Cambridge. After postdoctoral research at the University of Edinburgh he co-founded and helped build the industrial biotechnology company Ingenza Ltd.

Robert moved to Australia in 2010 where he continued his passion for research and innovation in roles at The University of Queensland before taking up his current position at QUT.

He leads and collaborates in a range of large projects involving industrial biotechnology and synthetic biology from waste conversion processes to pharmaceutical production and from basic research to scale-up and commercialization.

He is the industrial and Synthetic Biotechnology Program leader in the Centre for Agriculture and the Bioeconomy, is a chief investigator in the Centre of Excellence in Synthetic Biology, and is the Vice President of the Synthetic Biology Australasia society.

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