Alumni profiles

Dr Arshad Mairaj

As a member of Professor Dan Hewak's Novel Glass and Fibre Group, Arshad worked on infrared fibres and waveguides for active applications. After he was awarded his PhD in 2003, he continued to work at the ORC as a postdoctoral researcher before becoming Commercialisation Team Leader at the Corporate Agency for Science and Technology Research in Singapore. He now works as Intellectual Property and Innovation Manager for the NHS in Hampshire and Berkshire. Arshad tells us more about his time at the ORC and his current job role.

“I had a superb time at the ORC and would repeat the experience if I had to do it all over again. I had a very supportive supervisor and senior staff could always point me in the right direction when needed. Technical and admin staff were always on hand to assist in any way possible and fellow PhD students were an excellent “positive” distraction. During my time at the ORC I developed plenty of transferable skills to assist in new career options.

My current role as Intellectual Property and Innovation Manager involves exploiting Intellectual Property. This particular area interests me because the work we do is not heavily dependant on current industry booms or technology experiencing lifecycle peaks (i.e. flavour of the quarter - be it miro-electronics, optical, biotech, etc.), but instead we deal with rather varied technologies and a good mix of engineering and biomedical / healthcare sciences.

I also get to interact with a lot of people and gain satisfaction from bringing early stage technologies to the marketplace via licensing deals and construction of SBUs (small business units). It is a very challenging job as every single project is different but this keeps it fresh.

Although I am not directly involved with research now, I help guide other R&D activities to fit with present and emerging market trends, and I have a growing professional interest in the interface between bio/healthcare and ICT.

I would say the greatest achievement of my career so far has been securing seven-figure license deals with several key Asia-Pacific industrial giants.”

Copyright University of Southampton 2006