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All Party Parliamentary Group on Photonics Launched in UK

24 February 2017

APPG on Photonics Reception  | 21 February
From left: Natalie McGarry, Carol Monaghan,
Karin Burger, and Simon Andrews

On 21 February, SPIE Europe supported the first event of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Photonics in London, which invited Members of Parliament (MPs) to meet leaders in the photonics industry. Over a two-hour exhibit and reception, guests spoke to representatives of Qioptiq, Leonardo Systems, Cobalt Light Systems, M Squared Lasers, the University of Southampton, the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN), and other entities about products, services, and opportunities offered by photonics.

Some notable attendees at this event included:

  • Carol Monaghan, Glasgow North West MP and Scottish National Party politician
  • John Lincoln, CEO of The Photonics Leadership Group
  • Karin Burger, Manager, SPIE Europe
  • Natalie McGarry, Glasgow East MP
  • Alison Thewliss, Glasgow Central MP
  • Simon Andrews, Executive Director of SPIE Corporate Member Fraunhofer UK
  • SPIE Member Graeme Malcolm, CEO and Founder of SPIE Corporate Member M Squared
  • Dr. Keith Ruxton, Author at M Squared
  • Neil Martin, CEO of Compound Semiconductor Technologies Global Ltd.
  • Alistair Wilson, Business Development Manager of Compound Semiconductor Technologies Global Ltd.
  • Margaret Ferrier, Rutherglen and Hamilton West MP, Scottish National Party politician

The UK Parliament established the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Photonics in October of 2016 to facilitate regular discussions with members of the optics and photonics community in the UK. MP Carol Monaghan serves as Chair for the group, collaborating with John Lincoln of UK Photonics and Karin Burger of SPIE Europe to build a solid foundation between the photonics community and the APPG on Photonics.

SPIE Europe has stepped forward to act as Secretariat for the APPG on Photonics. Responsibilities include organizing and promoting meetings, inviting guests, and creating the optimal environment for the sharing of knowledge and ideas between the group and the photonics industry.

An estimated three to four meetings will be held annually, each with the goal of raising awareness of the photonics industry and recognizing the impact optics and photonics makes on the UK economy and its potential for future economic growth. Meetings will take the form of traditional sit-down sessions, presentations, panel discussions, or a combination of an exhibit and reception. Topics for each meeting will be based on the UK Government’s Industrial Strategy, a consultation to address long-term challenges faced by the UK economy.