Monday 26 November 2018


The Technology Innovation Lecture tour with Mr Mark Gilligan, Blacktrace Holdings Ltd, United Kingdom kicked-off today (26 November 2018) at the Nguyen Van Dao Hall, University of Engineering and Technology, Vietnam National University Hanoi, the first of three events in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City (28 November) and Danang (29 November).

Following the success of the Social Innovation Lecture Tour with Dr Belinda Bell in October 2018, the British Council-supported Technology Innovation Lecture tour with Mr Mark Gilligan will be held in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Danang. The tour demonstrates the United Kingdom's commitment, through the British Council in Vietnam, to a close relationship with Vietnamese, especially younger generations such as university students hungry to learn about studying opportunities and ways to explore technology and innovation. Mr Stephen Lysaght, Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy, said: 'Technology and innovation have an important role to play in society today. Mr Mark Gilligan, a leading expert in his field, is here to inspire the technology enthusiasts, especially young generations to have deep, detailed and realistic understanding in this field. This programme is part of a lecture series put together by the British Council and the series of “Inspire Me” events to celebrate 45 years of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and the UK and 25 years of the British Council working in Vietnam'.

The United Kingdom is a world leader in technology innovation. According to the British Government, UK technology sector is worth nearly £184 billion to its economy, growing 2.6 times faster than the wider UK economy and comprised of 223,000 tech companies. UK is a global leader in digital tech investment, £3.3 billion in 2016, with more than 2,645 deals. Moreover, London is the second most connected tech ecosystem on the planet. 

Originating from the UK, Mr Mark Gilligan is not only the founder and CEO of Blacktrace Technology, but also an expert in productising science and technology start-up business creation. With experience in technology innovation, he advises young people on the importance of creative ideas in technology, how to bring hi-tech products to the market, how to call for investments in technological innovation along with opportunities to study, research in the UK and collaborate with Blacktrace Group, UK.

Blacktrace Group designs, develops and manufactures cutting-edge technologies and products for many applications in chemistry, microfluidics, biology, nanomaterial sciences and more. The group is passionate about innovation and creating superior products which make a real difference to advancing science. Blacktrace have offices in the USA, Japan, India and Brazil and more than 40 distributors worldwide offering technical assistance and support. Mr Mark Gilligan worked in aerodynamics, Formula 1 racing cars, mail handling equipment and developing the world’s first DVD players. 

As technology and innovation play an important part in economic development and social welfare, their inclusion in career orientation for students is an important step in the development process. Ms Donna McGowan, Country Director of the British Council in Vietnam, added: 'In Vietnam, the British Council has actively supported and coordinated at all levels to disseminate the knowledge of technology innovation, bringing it these closer to the Vietnamese people, especially the younger generation – university students. I believe that Mr Mark Gilligan’s depth of experience will inspire young people in Vietnam when thinking about their future careers.'

This tour has attracted the attention and participation of start-up entrepreneurs, university lecturers and incubation hubs/centres wanting to connect and learn about training and incubation experiences from start-up enterprise programmes in the UK.

At the event, Mr Mark Gilligan’s main topics were:

  • What is technological innovation? How to put the scientific research into real and cool products? 
  • How to realise the creative ideas?
  • How to bring hi-tech products to the market?
  • Call for investments in technological innovation?
  • Opportunity to study, research and collaborate with Blacktrace Group, UK. 

The Technology Innovation Lecture tour with Mr Mark Gilligan will continue in Ho Chi Minh City and Danang.

Ho Chi Minh City
08.30 – 11.30, 28 November 2018
HCMC University of Technology, Vietnam National University HCMC
268 Ly Thuong Kiet, Ward 14, District 10, Ho Chi Minh City

08.30 – 11.30, 29 November 2018  
University of Technology, Danang University
54 Nguyen Luong Bang, Hoa Khanh Bac, Lien Chieu, Danang

The British Council has been working with Vietnam since 1993. In 2018, we are marking this 25th anniversary with a series of events celebrating cultural relations and exchange between the UK and Vietnam.

Notes to Editor

Hanh Le 
Communications Manager
British Council
20 Thuy Khue
Tay Ho
T +84 (0)24 38436780 (ext.1957)
F +84 (0)24 38434962

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We work with over 100 countries in the fields of arts and culture, English language, education and civil society. Last year we reached over 75 million people directly and 758 million people overall including online, broadcasts and publications. We make a positive contribution to the countries we work with – changing lives by creating opportunities, building connections and engendering trust. Founded in 1934 we are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter and a UK public body. We receive 15 per cent core funding grant from the UK government.