Our Project Portfolio
Here at PLMCS, our project portfolio is very varied. Commissions include short assignments that may require only a few days (e.g. expert advice on bids, collaborations, facilities and services) as well as longer-term, embedded roles supporting clients to develop strategically important initiatives for which there is limited internal resource. For these projects, we provide specialist subject knowledge, focus, delivery, external perspective and access to networks.
Examples of some of our projects are below:
West Midlands Health Technologies Cluster (WMHTC)
West Midlands Health Technologies Cluster (WMHTC): In 2019, PLMCS was commissioned by the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) on behalf of a group of regional stakeholders to explore the potential for the establishment of an industry cluster for health technologies in the West Midlands.
Working with colleagues with complementary knowledge and experience, we undertook a detailed analysis of the sector in the region identifying the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats and provided a comprehensive Cluster Development Plan for consideration by the Stakeholder Group. The Plan provided an options analysis which was discussed by the Group and the establishment of a new, independent organisation was decided upon.
We developed an Outline Business Plan that outlined the key success factors for a sustainable organisation and three funders stepped forward to support a one year ‘set-up’ phase in 2020 to test the financial viability of the new entity. In summer 2020, the WMHTC was formally incorporated as a company limited by guarantee and an Executive Chair was recruited.
Paddie was retained by WMHTC to continue to support the emerging cluster organisation throughout the set-up phase and for its first year of operations (April 2021-March 2022). As Relationships Manager for the WMHTC, she is responsible for growing the membership, identifying their needs and gaps in provision as well as programmes and initiatives to meet those requirements. See here for client comments.
Many commissions are from small organisations or groups of organisations that wish to do something collaboratively but which require wider networks, expanded memberships or business cases to be made across organisations. PLMCS provides independent advice and support to ensure that the perspectives of all of the stakeholders are represented and provides leadership for the development of the initiative whilst ensuring that ownership remains with the partners.
EIT Health – the Knowledge and Innovation Community for Healthy Living and Active Ageing
Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs) are large international partnerships comprising academic and industry partners who work together to deliver solutions to Europe’s key societal challenges of which the ageing population is one. PLMCS was commissioned to facilitate the participation of the West Midlands (WM) health economy in such a partnership.
PLMCS led initial discussions with two emerging consortia and negotiated a partnership with the InnoLIFE consortium led by Imperial College and the Karolinksa Institute. We represented the interests, strengths and ambitions of the WM throughout the development of the consortium both nationally and internationally and when the call for proposals was published by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), Paddie was nominated to join the international Editorial Team preparing the proposal document. She contributed extensively to the development of bid document which was coordinated by EY in Germany, developing concepts to deliver the required outputs, drafting and reviewing text, in adherence to tight deadlines. The InnoLIFE proposal was announced as the winner in December 2014 and commenced operations in January 2015.
PLMCS was retained by WMAHSN to oversee the involvement of the WM in EIT Health during its set up phase in 2015 and support the first year of operations in 2016. In addition to ensuring that the involvement of WM stakeholders was optimised, for the first half of 2016, Paddie had national and international responsibilities for the establishment and operations of EIT Health’s Proof of Concept funding. Supporting WM organisations to participate has reaped benefits and the additional income to the WM from EIT Health in 2016 was in the region of €1M. The relationship with EIT Health continues. See comments from our clients here by Tony Davis and also here by Pam Waddell.
In recent years, we have had more approaches from clients seeking strategy and programme development support especially in relation to technology adoption and innovation. This work requires an understanding of the ‘ecosystem’; the supply ‘push’ and market ‘pull’, economic and social environment, user demands and expectations, regulation, procurement and deployment and adoption challenges.
Implementation of the Local Industrial Strategy for Health and Life Sciences and Covid-19 Recovery Strategy
In January 2020, PLMCS was commissioned by the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) to provide interim support pending the recruitment of a Senior Policy Officer for the implementation of the data-driven health care component of the West Midlands Local Industrial Strategy.
With the advent of Covid-19, this role changed dramatically and was extended to support to the Recovery Taskforce, the development of initiatives and programmes to strengthen the health technologies sector in terms of facilities, R&D, skills and innovation. The role was passed over to the full-time post holder in September 2020. See comments from our clients here.
West Midlands Life (WM Life)
PLMCS has had a long relationship with the West Midlands Academic Health Science Network (WMAHSN) most recently on a public health initiative called WM Life that seeks to engage people in a meaningful way with their own health and care.
This long-term, strategic programme of work has been designed, initiated and delivered by Paddie and the initial focus was on engagement with young people from disadvantaged communities and led to WM Young Life.
This event, held during the first Birmingham Tech Week in October 2019, was designed to raise awareness of the use of technology in health and care and encouraged young people to consider the sector as one in which to pursue their interest in technology.
In January 2021, we embarked on a new programme of work to embed the citizen voice more fully in the operations and programmes of the WMAHSN; these include the creation of a Citizen Panel to inform the SME Innovation Fund funding decisions and two, user-driven service redesign projects. See comments from our clients here.
Bid writing is a long-standing part of the portfolio and we have developed proposals for a wide range of national and international funders mainly with our university clients. These are for the most part high-value, strategically important projects such as National Institute of Health Research Biomedical Research Centres and Applied Research Collaborations as well as multi-institution, international collaborations in mental health research funded by The Medical Research Council. We have also been commissioned to support first time applicants helping them to interpret funders’ rules, address priorities and act as “critical friend”. See comments from our clients here.