Meet our keynote speakers


Prof. Jeremy Howells is Dean of the Faculty of Business and Law at the University of Southampton as well as a member of the Centre for Innovation and Enterprise within Southampton Management School. Before coming to Southampton in 2011 he held the Eddie Davies Chair of Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Manchester and was also the Executive Director at the Manchester Institute of Innovation Research (MIoIR) and head of the Strategy Division at the Manchester Business School.

Professor Howells has researched and written extensively on innovation. His research has focused on how mechanisms and intra- and inter-organisational practices can support the innovation process. His research has been funded by various national Research Councils, the European Commission, the OECD and the World Bank as well as non-profit organisations and private companies.

Professor Howells’ will deliver the keynote presentation on the first day and his paper is: “Bauxite Residue: Harnessing Open Innovation and Effective Communities of Innovation and Practice”.

Ken Evans

After completing a degree in Chemistry and then his PhD in Material Science at the University of Manchester in 1971, Ken Evans joined the Research Division of British Aluminium which later became Alcan and then Rio Tinto Alcan. Ken held various positions including Research Director, Development Director  and Technology Director for various parts of the business across many countries. Ken’s research activities over the last 47 year have included a very wide range of bauxite, specialty hydrate, alumina and red mud areas. Ken first became involved in red mud in 1972 and remains actively involved in activities in both remediation aspects and the search for uses.

Dr. Evans will talk about “Success and challenges in the management and use of bauxite residue” on the 6th of October at 08:30

Koen Binnemans

Prof. Koen Binnemans (KU Leuven) is a world-leading expert in the chemistry of REEs and the environmentally-friendly use of ionic liquid in solvent extraction and critical metal recovery. Author of more than 200 papers on REEs (320 papers in total) with a h-index of 48 (54 according to Google Scholar) and over 10000 citations. General coordinator of EU FP7 MC-ITN EREAN and H2020 MSCA-ETN REDMUD, and Steering Committee Member of ERECON (DG Enterprise and Industry). Vice-chair of the European Rare-Earth and Actinide Society (ERES).

At 09:00am on the 7th of October Prof. Binnemans will speak about: “Rare earths: essential elements for the transition to a low-carbon economy”