About Us – Meet the team

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Meet Our Team

Meet our talented professionals who bring a diverse range of skills and expertise to the forefront of innovation.

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Rikesh Shah

Rikesh Shah is an innovation expert, guest lecturer at the Royal College of Arts and Harvard University, non-executive advisor at Cities Today, London Transport Museum and See.Sense who joined CPC in October 2023 to Head of IPEC.

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Kayleigh Hadjimina

Kayleigh Hadjimina, is an external affairs and communications professional who joined Connected Places Catapult in February 2023 as Senior Marketing and Communications Manager for Place Leadership, focusing on the IPEC and IPLA milestone projects.

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Olga Kuzmich

Olga Kuzmich is a digital marketer and community manager, who joined CPC in October 2023 and is focussed on growing community of innovation enthusiasts in public sector procurement, she is also looking after IPEC website, LinkedIn channels and its content.

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Nick Woodward

Nick Woodward is Academic Engagement Manager and has been working with IPEC’s Academic Partners predominantly through CRISPP (Consortium for Research in Innovative and Strategic Public Procurement) since 2018.

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Andrew Boyd

Andrew Boyd has been a Project Manager for over 10 years and have a varied background in science and engineering. Andrew started work at the Connected Places Catapult in December 2022 when he took on the IPEC project.

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James Cushing

James Cushing is the Place Leadership Ecosystem Technical Programme Manager. He engages with funding partners of IPEC and supports project delivery.

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Malcolm Harbour CBE

Malcolm Harbour is an Associate Director of CPC, with an expert steering role in the ‘Challenging Procurement” programme and in the development of IPEC. Chairs the Consortium for Research in Innovative and Strategic Public Procurement (CRISPP).

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Ben Hawes

Ben Hawes is an Associate Director at the CPC and helps IPEC work with government and other external partners. He is a technology policy consultant, and previously worked in government policy on AI, smart cities and the internet of things.

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Nick Talbot

Nick Talbotis a Service Design Lead. Drawing upon Nick’s experience working both in and with Local Authorities to identify barriers to innovative procurement. Especially those that are tough to crack, hidden, or not currently addressed. And then designing new and engaging ways to upskill in these areas – giving meaning to the word Empowerment within IPEC.

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Trusha Oza

Trusha Oza is a Service Designer at Connected Places Catapult, working on projects that help wide range of organisations achieve their net zero and sustainability targets. Trusha works on designing the learning journey for the IPEC Community of public sector authorities, as well as supporting with the development of Cohort 2024-25.

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Bin Guan

Bin Guan is an urbanist with a town planning background and extensive experience in the built environment domain. Bin has many exciting projects in his portfolio, one of the recent contributions is delivering the inaugural cohort of CPC’s Innovation Places Leadership Academy milestone project as well in addition to his work with IPEC.

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Zain Bari

Zain Bari, is an impact economist who joined the Business Case and Impact Assessment team of CPC in July 2022. He focuses on producing research and evaluation for IPEC.

IPEC Cohort

Interested in joining our 2024/25 Cohort?

We are looking for five Local Authorities to join our forthcoming Cohort, where they'll receive personalised innovation procurement support fully funded by the UK government, along with opportunities for peer-to-peer learning interactions.

Signal your interest