Dr Maria Nelson

Head of Innovation & Sustainability

Strategy & Innovation

Dr Maria Nelson in an innovation leader passionate about fostering collaborative innovation between bright minds from industry, startups and academia. Maria is Head of Innovation and Sustainability at the Aerospace Technology Institute, the UK’s leading centre for aerospace research.

Before joining the ATI to build a new function to support sustainability-focused innovators in the sector, Maria was Director of Innovation Practice at Digital Catapult, where her team delivered a portfolio of deep tech innovation programmes for industry leaders and startups. Maria was previously Innovation Programme Manager at Cisco and has a background in strategic communications as well as academia and publishing.

Maria believes that game changing innovation can thrive where three intentions combine: to address real-world problems (especially the wicked ones), to turn high ambitions into tangible reality, and to believe in your direction of travel whilst taking one step at a time.