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Photo of Carol Fletcher
Photo of Carol Fletcher
Carol Fletcher
BT's Head of Academic and Research Partnerships
The future starts now - it's already driven by data, controlled by AIs and hyper-connected - so where do we go next?

This stuff matters - seriously. We're living connected, digital lives in a world that's been radically changed by our use of technology. Many of devices, applications and services we rely on today, and the technologies that underpin them, were inconceivable to previous generations. What happens next will be driven by the next generation of researchers coming out of universities. I need this new generation of research leaders to understand the ICT industry they will be inheriting - because they will be shaping our world from now on, and we all need them to get it right!

I run the Tommy Flowers Network (TFN) (formally the Tommy Flowers Institute) to bring together the ICT industry with the new generation of our universities' postgraduate researchers to understand the biggest challenges we're facing. For me, this is an incredibly exciting opportunity. Sure, so academics publish papers, companies serve customers, the government implements public policy - but if we pulled together, just imagine the amazing things we could do!

TFN is making this happen.

Let's get together and nurture the next generation of researchers, because this stuff matters - seriously.

The Tommy Flowers Network

The network aims to:

Delivering world-class ICT research in the future will require a new breed of researcher. We need researchers who can collaborate confidently across multiple academic disciplines - and work seamlessly between academia and industry.

That's why we in BT, along with our partners from across the ICT sector, have launched the Tommy Flowers Network. The network brings the ICT industry and UK academia together to produce the research leaders of the future. These researchers will be equipped to take on the complex challenges facing the ICT sector and help our nation to enrich its world-leading knowledge economy.

BT is a big company but we're not as big as the whole industry and that's why TFN isn't about any one company or any one university, it's about getting together for our common good. The whole thing is hosted at Adastral Park, for free, because this is the natural centre-of-gravity for industrial telecoms research in the country, so it's a no-brainer.

We have named the network after the GPO (General Post Office) engineer Tommy Flowers who worked on the code breaking machines at Bletchley Park during the war and built Colossus. It was an academic/industrial collaboration that delivered real impact: Cambridge graduate Bill Tutte deciphered the Lorenz code, Professor Max Newman saw the potential for mechanisation, and Tommy Flowers created the working machine. We are building on this legacy, developing researchers from all over the country, from both universities and industry to tackle contemporary challenges.

If you want to make the most from collaborative technological research and really understand the ICT industry's challenges then you need look no further than the Tommy Flowers Network. Join us and make amazing things happen.

"Healthy Longevity" conference - October 2019
Latest news from the Tommy Flowers Network
Tommy Flowers Network - TFNetwork

A new decade a new name. The Tommy Flowers Institute is evolving!

We launched 4 years ago with the mission statement of 'bridging the gap between the ICT Industry and UK Academia to help produce research leaders of the future'. We're growing into a network of like-minded people and institutions working for a greater good. We want to build upon that and with your continued support we can continue to create something really special we can be amazingly proud of.

Now the 'Tommy Flowers Institute' will become 'Tommy Flowers Network'.

We're growing into a network of like-minded people and institutions working for a greater good. We want to build upon that and with your continued support create something really special we can be amazingly proud of.

We'll expand our remit to bring you Thought Leadership and other exciting events alongside our conferences.

A cancellation and a lot of great things to come
The last conference on 'Creating Value for Economies: Collaborate - Innovate - Educate' had to be cancelled due to the Corona Virus, and now we are inviting everybody to join us in growing this network in the virtual world until we can meet again for real at the next conference.
Virtual networking: Get involved!

Follow our blog for the latest updates via Google or email by using the widgets on the blog side bar.

Are you interested in publishing on our blog? Whether it's a whitepaper or a poster, or are you interested in hosting a Thought Leadership event? Please fill in this Formwize.

Become a TFNetwork member by subscribing to our Formwize. To unsubscribe or for enquiries please send us an email.

Join us on social media through LinkedIn and Twitter (@TommyFlowersNet).

Virtual networking: Posters Galore!

Following the cancellation of our conference we put our thinking hats on, of how we can get through those difficult times and making use of the fantastic poster contributions we received. The list of posters in our respective conference post from beginning of March is 20 long, and we plan to feature them here throughout the year on our blog. This is what Tommy Flowers Network is about: Connecting young researchers with their top level research to the world - in real life and virtually!

Real world conference dates
'Let's Get Physical' (13th - 14th October 2020)

During this conference we will be showcasing the fundamental role that physics and physicist have in shaping our digital future. We will yet again highlight the value of collaboration between industry and academia and we will enable networking across the board. We aim to discuss subject matters like Optics, Electromagnetics, Quantum and QKD as well as AI, DSP and Data Science.

Although, the times are uncertain at the moment, we would like to keep the ball rolling and keep building this network of likeminded people. Either way, it will be for the benefit of our young researchers. If you are interested in contributing to this conference, whether you are from academia, industry or other institutions please get in touch via email already. We will open registration after Easter.

'Creating Value for Economies: Collaborate - Innovate - Educate' (23rd - 24th March 2021)

We had wonderful feedback and inspiration through the planning of this now cancelled conference, and most of our speakers have already committed their support.

This conference explores the impact of the ecosystem that we are building. We will discuss existing success stories with academia and industry. Via a poster event, we will be celebrating our young researchers, positioning their work within this vibrant world of Technology and Innovation.

We will encourage collaboration throughout the conference with our young researchers, experienced strategists and successful entrepreneurs, by pushing new ideas, providing sound advice and sparking new innovations.

How to join the Tommy Flowers Network

Follow our blog for the latest updates via Google or email by using the widgets on the blog side bar.

Are you interested in publishing on our blog? Whether it's a whitepaper or a poster, or are you interested in hosting a Thought Leadership event? Please fill in this Formwize.

Become a TFNetwork member by subscribing to our Formwize. To unsubscribe or for enquiries please send us an email.

Join us on social media through LinkedIn and Twitter (@TommyFlowersNet).

Past conferences

The Tommy Flowers Network is a cross-industry initiative to develop ICT post-graduates to become better research leaders (both for industry and academia) by exposing them to industrialists and their real-world research challenges. We do this is with a conference series, pulling in over 120 attendees each time, including postgrads, academics, SMEs, vendors, BT, local and national government.

Conference briefings, slide decks and videos from previous events can be downloaded from the blog.

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