• 4 Jun 2024
  • In-person
  • CPD

Workforce for the Future

How can leaders promote and support learners, entrepreneurs, and employees to succeed?

This event will bring senior cross sector/cross industry decision makers to a half day conference to fully understand the need for skills and the role business can have in determining the workforce of the future.

Why and how we want to develop the workforce of the future really sits with the end user, the economy and the employer. 

Join IoD members and wider stakeholders for a lively facilitated discussion which will explore the critical skills that we need to ensure a thriving future economy for Scotland.

The day will include input from Skills Development Scotland, those behind the Hayward Review the Withers Report and representation from Scotland’s University and College sectors. Results from the IoD Scotland's State of the Nation Survey will also be discussed.


Heather May Morgan

I am Dean for Enterprise and Innovation and Senior Lecturer in Applied Health Sciences at the University of Aberdeen.

I work closely with the Vice-Principal Regional Engagement, Heads of Schools and a network of School Enterprise & Innovation Champions to promote an enterprise culture at the University of Aberdeen. The purpose is to increase engagement with businesses and other organisations, for commercial and societal impact, and to enhance new business creation (both through student start-up activities, and spin-out activity); engagement with the regional innovation ecosystem is a critical aspect of the role - in support of wider regional economic development.

I am a multidisciplinary social scientist whose formal training spans law, French language, forensic medicine, philosophy, gender studies, social research, sociology, criminology and health services research. I specialise in digital health and qualitative research and have over fifteen years of postgraduate experience in University research and teaching. I am a multiple prize-winning public engagement with research expert. I have individually or jointly secured research funding totalling more than £1.6m. I am lead author/co-author of over thirty peer-reviewed papers and two edited collections. I review for multiple high impact journals/publishers and have assessed grant applications for several international governments as well as major UK funders.

I collaborate with numerous commercial, not for profit and other sector partners. I facilitate knowledge exchange projects and have been involved in various start-up and spin out activities. I am leading in the scale up of work-based learning for all students in line with our 2040 strategy. I have external experience in the independent monitoring of prisons (Scottish Government, 2010-2013). I am co-creator of Aberdeen’s original, free-to-play, location-based, augmented reality game for iOS devices: [m]apping. I am co-founder of The FGM Education Project.

James Withers

James is the former Chief Executive of Scotland Food & Drink and NFU Scotland.
He now runs his own business provides advisory services to government, industry organisations and commercial businesses, in particular in the area of strategic economic development.

In 11 years as CEO at Scotland Food & Drink (SF&D), James co-ordinated an industry and government collaboration to drive forward a growth strategy for the £15 billion Scottish food and drink sector.

James has also sat on the Scottish Government’s national resilience group and co-chaired, with the Cabinet Secretary, a Food Security Taskforce.

James has a number of non-executive director roles, including being on the boards of the Scottish Tourism Alliance and Abbey Group, working to grow the UK and Irish tourism industries.

In 2022, James was appointed by Scottish Ministers to lead an independent review of Scotland’s £3.5 billion skills system. He presented proposals for reform in 2023 which have been broadly accepted by Scottish Government. He is an ongoing advocate for reform of Scotland’s skills and education system.

Kenny MacInnes

Kenny MacInnes was appointed as Forth Valley College’s new Principal and Chief Executive on Monday 1 May 2023.

Kenny started his career at 16 as former EITB (NASEC) (now ECITB) Mechanical Engineering Apprentice at Falkirk College of Technology – which later became Forth Valley College.

Upon completing his apprenticeship Kenny worked within the petro-chemical, manufacturing and aero-repair industries before he joined the College as a lecturer in 2007. His notable skills and professionalism saw him rise quickly through the ranks at Forth Valley College, moving on to become a Curriculum Manager in 2012, Head of Department in 2014, Director of Curriculum in 2018, Vice Principal in 2019 and Principal in 2023.

Kenny has a degree in Computer Aided Engineering from Glasgow Caledonian University, TQFE Post Graduate and two Masters Degrees in Education Leadership and Social Research from Dundee University and Stirling University respectively.

Kenny was also an experienced Associate Assessor with Education Scotland since 2014 and he was responsible for the delivery of the College’s STEM strategy as Director of Curriculum in Engineering and Science, before taking on the position of Vice Principal and now Principal.

Kenny is married with three children. He is a keen musician and mountain biker.

Louise Hayward

Louise Hayward is Professor Emerita of Educational Assessment and Innovation (University of Glasgow) and Honorary Professor at the University of Wales, Trinity Saint David. Originally an English teacher, Louise undertakes research to improve assessment policy and practice by working with learners and teachers, educational professionals and users of assessment evidence, employers, colleges, universities and the voluntary sector. She was a member of the internationally renowned Assessment Reform Group and has published widely on Assessment and Processes of Change.

In 2018, Louise founded the International Educational Assessment Network, a group of researchers and policy makers from twelve nations across four continents who collaborate to tackle shared, intransigent assessment challenges. Louise has worked with OECD on the Learning 2030 programme and with UNESCO on Assessment in STEM education. In 2021, she chaired an Independent Review of Qualifications and Assessment in England (A New ERA: equitable, reliable assessment, NEU, 2022). Most recently she chaired the Independent Review of Qualifications and Assessment in Scotland where ADES played a key role. The report, ‘It’s Our Future’ was published in June 2023 and is currently with the Cabinet Secretary.



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