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Advisory Board Members.

The IDE advisory board brings together the experience and insight of a broad range of automotive and technology experts to guide IDE policy and strategic decision making.

Dr David Pearson


Dr David Pearson has extensive experience with several of the great brand owners in the UK, Europe, North and South America in consumer goods, electronics and technology licensing. After graduating in Law from Oxford University he gained blue chip management development in sales and marketing with Procter & Gamble, Mars and Pillsbury.


As Managing Director of Sony UK Consumer Products he built sales from £150 million to £523 million in ten years. His success was rewarded by additional responsibility for a region in Western Europe and then promotion as Managing Director for the entire Sony United Kingdom Company, responsible for turnover exceeding £2.2 billion and 5000 employees.

He was Managing Director of International Brands for Pentland Group plc, a then FTSE 350 company, and then for five years he was Chief Executive Officer of NXT plc, a then FTSE 350 technology licensing company specialising in Audio.

Since then he has built a portfolio career and to date has served on 26 boards, six as Chairman. He acts as a Non-Executive Chairman, Director and Adviser working across all three sectors, public, private and voluntary. He has performed several assignments in the transport sector including six years as Chairman of innovITS, the centre for excellence in Intelligent Transport Systems.

Jon Beasley

Director, Technology & Projects, Advanced Propulsion Centre 

Jon Beasley has more than 30 years’ experience in the motor industry working for multinational suppliers and on government and industry programmes.


Jon held various leadership roles within GKN including Group Technology Officer and Driveline Chief Engineer for Aston Martin, Daewoo, Ford Europe, Honda, JLR, Mazda and Volvo. He has worked overseas, establishing GKN’s driveshaft manufacturing operation in Thailand. He was the Programme Director for the Transport Systems Catapult during the critical start-up phase.


At the APC Jon’s key focus is development and management of the projects funded through the competitions, bringing his technical experience of global product development.

Professor Chris Brace 

Professor of Automotive Propulsion and Deputy Director of the Powertrain Vehicle Research Centre, University of Bath
BEng(Hons), CEng, PhD, FIMechE

Chris Brace is Professor of Automotive Propulsion and Director of the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems. Chris is Deputy Director of the Powertrain Vehicle Research Centre at the University of Bath. Chris leads the Advanced Propulsion Centre Spoke for Thermal Propulsion System Efficiency and chairs the Academic Advisory Board of FISITA (Fédération Internationale des Sociétés d'Ingénieurs des Techniques de l'Automobile). He is a past chair of the Automobile Division of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE).


Chris leads a wide portfolio of propulsion systems research into topics including hybrid Diesel and SI engine systems, electrification, advanced transmission systems and driving behaviour. The research has two main themes. First - new technologies that can deliver more sustainable propulsion systems. Secondly - the design of new techniques to support the automotive sector progression towards a more virtual product development process. These strands come together through the development of novel and intensive measurement and simulation techniques for multi physics processes, leading to greater insight into system behaviour under dynamic operating conditions.


All of Chris’s research is in collaboration with industry, most notably Ford Motor Company and Jaguar LandRover. Chris has published over 120 conference and journal papers with over 50 industrial co-authors and attracted over £18 million for collaborative research funded by EPSRC, DTi, TSB/Innovate UK, APC and directly from industry

Dr. Graham Hoare OBE

Executive Director, Business Transformation, Ford of Britain 

Dr. Graham Hoare OBE is executive director, Business Transformation, Ford of Britain, leading the implementation of Ford’s Sprint to 6 Reset & Redesign plan in the UK, reporting to Steven Armstrong, group vice president and president, Europe, Middle East and Africa. He is also a member of the Boards of Ford of Britain and Ford Technologies.


Previously, Hoare served as director, Global Vehicle Evaluation and Verification, responsible for Ford’s test and development operations worldwide, delivering vehicle prototyping, validation and signoff for Ford’s global product portfolio. In addition to these responsibilities, Hoare led the Dunton Technical Centre in Essex, UK, the largest automotive R&D facility in the UK.

Hoare earlier served as executive director, Powertrain Engineering, Ford of Europe, for six years. Products delivered in this timeframe included Ford’s highly acclaimed EcoBoost 1.0-litre engine.


Previously, Hoare was director, Powertrain Research & Advanced Engineering, based in Dearborn, Michigan, USA. His responsibilities included the research, advanced development and technology planning associated with gasoline and diesel engines, hydrogen internal combustion engines, transmission and driveline systems, controls, calibration and NVH for Ford vehicles and affiliate-branded products globally.

Hoare was honoured in the UK with an OBE (Order of the British Empire) in 2018 for services to the Automotive Industry. He is a fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Institute of Mechanical Engineers and the Institute of Engineering Designers. He has led the UK Automotive Council Technology Group since May 2015.


Hoare earned primary qualifications in Mechanical Engineering, a master's degree in Engineering Business Management from the University of Warwick, and an Engineering Doctorate from University of Bath.

Professor Neville Jackson

Chief Technology & Innovation Officer, Ricardo plc 

Neville Jackson has been with Ricardo for thirty-six years and was appointed Chief Technology and Innovation Officer in 2009. He is responsible for future technology strategy, vision and R&D investment priorities for products and services in surface mobility, energy systems and critical resources. 


He is the co-ordinator and author of a wide range of technology roadmaps at National and European level, defining the potential, and technology pathways for transport energy, propulsion systems, future vehicle electrical/electronic architectures and digitalisation/virtual product development. In 2014, Prof. Jackson was named as one of the 20 most influential engineers in the UK by The Sunday Times & Debrett’s for his work in setting the technology agenda.  


A graduate of Imperial College, London, he is also a visiting Professor at the University of Brighton.  He Chairs both the UK Advanced Propulsion Centre Advisory Board, and the UK Automotive Council Future R&D Team. He is a member of the RAC Foundation Public Policy Committee, a board member and ex chair of the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership and a member of the steering group for the UK Electric Vehicle Energy Taskforce.  He also serves as Vice Chair of the European Road Transport Research Advisory Council (ERTRAC) and a member of the Industry Delegation for the European Green Vehicles Initiative (EGVI).  He is also a Fellow of the UK Royal Academy of Engineering and  a Fellow of the US SAE.

Mark Mathieson

Director of Innovation, McLaren Applied Technologies

In his role as Director of Innovation, Mark is responsible for the identification of technologies developed throughout the McLaren group of companies that can be commercialised via McLaren Applied Technologies. The route to market includes the definition of the product strategy and development plan, IP identification and the establishment of collaborative relationships with strategic partners.

The technical scope of his role includes modelling and simulation, data analytics, cloud-based platform solutions, electrification, control and edge computing. The application of this technology is to multiple sectors, including motorsport, automotive, public transport, aviation, defence, aerospace and health.

Previous to this role, Mark lead an innovative, forward thinking team at McLaren Automotive to define and deliver the next generation of world class technology for high performance road cars. Over the 10 years prior to this, Mark led the Formula 1 powertrain programme for Mercedes-Benz.

Most recently, Mark was appointed as co-CEO for the alliance between McLaren and Deloitte, sharing the leadership responsibilities with the vice-chairman of Deloitte UK. The objective for the Alliance is to build a 100M USD software products business in six years by taking F1-derived modelling and data analytics to multiple industry sectors where digitization is becoming an imperative as global businesses accelerate into the fourth industrial revolution.

Mark holds a BEng (hons) in mechanical engineering and an MPhil in engine design from the University of Bath, and has completed the Manufacturing Leaders course at Cambridge University. Mark also sits on the UK Automotive Council and leads the Digital work stream for the industry.

Allan Rankin

Director, Target3D 

Allan Rankin is founder and Managing Director of Target3D, a new emerging technology company focusing on 3D technologies. He built the Target3d team to offer cutting edge solutions from a range of manufacturers who collaborate across numerous industries, including the automotive, serious gaming and creative sectors.


Target3D specialise in utilising innovative technologies in virtual reality, training and simulation, hologram creation, serious gaming, animation & VFX and haptic feedback. Previously, Allan was a Business Development Consultant in a technology innovation agency.  

Steve Rothberg

Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research), Loughborough University

Steve Rothberg is Professor of Vibration Engineering and a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. He joined the academic staff at Loughborough in 1990 as an industrially funded lecturer.


His research in noise and vibration measurement and analysis, particularly in the development of laser technology for vibration and motion measurements, has attracted individual awards from the National Physical Laboratory and the Society of Experimental Mechanics, and contributed to Loughborough’s Queen’s Anniversary Prizes for Optical Engineering (2000) and High Value Manufacturing (2014). In 2007, after six successful years as Head of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering,


Steve became Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, leading the Loughborough team on the £40m project to deliver the Manufacturing Technology Centre project, where he is currently a Director. Steve became Pro Vice-Chancellor (Enterprise) in 2011, initiating a culture change across the institution and attracting significant investments to Loughborough University Science and Enterprise Park to deliver specific projects such as the new Advanced Technology Innovation Centre. Since 2014, he has been Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research).


He was part of the team that established Loughborough’s London campus on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and Loughborough’s lead in the team that secured BEIS funding for the Digital Engineering and Test Centre, forerunner of the Institute of Digital Engineering.

Matthias Wellers

Managing Director, AVL Powertrain UK

Matthias Wellers is the Managing Director of AVL Powertrain UK Ltd, assuming the position in 2006. Before this role Matthias Wellers was leading the IAV branch in UK and was working as a Senior Engineer in the Research & Technology division of Daimler in Stuttgart.

Matthias Wellers is an elected member of the UK Automotive Council Technology Group. Since 2016 he has been a visiting Professor at Loughborough University and an advisory board member of the Institute of Digital Engineering (IDE) in London.

Tianjin University China State Key Laboratory of Engines honored Matthias Wellers as a Professor Honoris Causa in 2013.

Matthias Wellers is a chartered engineer and Fellow of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers. In 1998 he received the Ph.D. degree from the Institute of Automatic Control, RWTH Aachen. He studied Mechanical Engineering at the RWTH Aachen as well as at the Dartmouth College in USA and the Ruhr University in Bochum, Germany. 

Andrew West

Professor of Intelligent Systems, University of Loughborough

Professor Andrew West’s main research focus has been on the lifecycle engineering of intelligent, distributed, component-based manufacturing control, monitoring & next generation intelligent manufacturing systems. He holds a B.Sc. and Ph.D. attained at University of Leeds, and has held Research posts at Cambridge University and Loughborough University in Manufacturing Engineering in 1995.

Doug Wolff

Business Development Manager, Manufacturing, Unreal Engine Enterprise at Epic Games

Doug leads Business Development for Manufacturing across EMEA for Unreal Engine Enterprise. What that really means is he helps people who want to use Unreal Engine 4 for their businesses get projects off the ground.


Doug has worked in video games for over 15 years, most of those in core game development, and has undertaken the journey into the Enterprise sector over the last five.

Steven Wood

Senior Commercial Manager, Digital Catapult

Steven joined the Digital Catapult in May 2014 and was responsible for creating the first commercial services provided to address the needs of its growing number of industrial partners. He has over 20 years’ experience of working in the digital sector and was responsible for writing BT's first e-business strategy for B2B clients and turning the concepts into actual services.

Steven co-founded a start-up venture which grew to operate in seven countries and served over 600 companies in the global advertising and publishing industries. Prior to joining the Digital Catapult, Steven was Head of Business Services at EngineeringUK, an organisation which led the way in encouraging young people to pursue a career in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).