My obsession with improving gender balance

Chief Executive of the National Centre for Universities and Business, and Chairman of the Digital Television Group, Dr David Docherty spoke to us exclusively about his hopes and strategies for Going Global 2014 in Miami.

Dr Docherty’s motivation for attending this year’s conference is to discover international solutions approaches to common problems:

"For me, it's about trying to figure out how other people are working, reviewing, giving advice and analysing problems."

Reflecting on Going Global 2014's themes of inclusivity, innovation and impact, he honed in on gender equality:

"One of my obsessions is getting talented women into manufacturing and engineering. Over 50 per cent of the UK graduate pool is now female, and yet only nine per cent of our professional engineers are female, and on some of our manufacturing and engineering courses three per cent of students are female. That's horrendous.

"Other countries are doing this better… I want to poke around those issues and see if I can bring back some knowledge."

David is chairing a session on developing exceptional talent. Of the UK he states:

"The problem is, people are uncomfortable with 'exceptional talent' in this country; we think it's bragging. It's the same in Japan."

Read our full interview with David, including why focus on science and technology education could give us a stagnant economy and his lukewarm view of MOOCs.

Dr Docherty’s interview is one of a series of interviews with Going Global 2014 speakers conducted for the British Council by Media FHE, providers of the HE intelligence service HEi-know