Sector Intelligence & Project Management

Through our HIRANI Assist programme, our team has a wealth of experience in helping to drive innovation projects.

Our comprehensive support includes areas such as providing a unique Northern Ireland perspective; analysis and data and review and development.

We help innovators across health, social care, academia and business secure collaborative opportunities.

Joann’s current role as Chief Executive of HIRANI provides support to accelerate collaborative health research and innovation from the lab-clinic-patient-home. She connects knowledge with opportunities to drive health and prosperity for the citizens of Northern Ireland, the health services and the wider, global health and life sciences economy.  She also advisory positions at C-TRIC Innovate-UK, TopMD, and the British Pharmacological Society.

Joann started her career as a cellular pharmacologist and industry fellow at Imperial college developing novel immunomodulation therapies for COPD, delivering clinical biomarker rationale for 4+ novel therapeutics to accelerate progression to the clinic. 

Since 2011, Joann has sought to facilitate industry-academic partnerships delivering the £16M US-UK Pfizer Rare Diseases Consortium for collaborative commercialisation of small molecule and gene therapy programmes, and as Chief of Staff at Merck UK R&D Laboratories (2018-2020), to realise the start-up vision for the new collaborative £1.3B UK R&D Innovation laboratories for Neurodegeneration at The Francis Crick Institute, in London. 

Joann is also a visiting Professor at Ulster University and recently graduated from with an Executive MBA from Imperial College, London where she also won the Dean’s award and Joan Woodward Prize for Organisational Strategy.

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