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Open Innovation Manager

Belgium, Brussels

Rechargeable Battery Materials

Research & Development

Job description

Purpose of the function

As Open Innovation Manager for our Business Unit Rechargeable Battery Materials (RBM), you will manage global scouting of technologies in search of new opportunities to advance and accelerate R&D initiatives. You will align with internal R&D needs, write technical briefs, and effectively build external capabilities to source technologies.  Additionally, you will collaborate cross-functionally (e.g. legal, business development) to enable the establishment of partnerships with solution providers to support technology development activities. In addition, you will conduct technology landscapes to uncover emerging technologies and characterize them as potential opportunities or threats and systematically look for opportunities to grow RBM patent portfolio. You will interact closely with the R&D director, Heads of Team, Programs Manager, and Patent Attorneys.


  • Build a global network of potential partners to include Universities, Government Labs, Research Centers and other institutes supporting contracted and mutually beneficial research and development.
  • You interact with the following RBM departments :
    • R&D (academic collaborations, joint-development with other battery components suppliers)
    • Process Technology & Engineering (collaboration with equipment suppliers)
    • Applied Technology (joint-development & partnership with OEMs or cell makers)
    • Business Development (collaborations and funded projects in emerging applications)
    • Umicore Legal Department (contractual framework of all projects)
  • You develop and manage the External Project and IP competence teams (HR, budget,…), follow-up on active external projects execution and alignment with innovation objectives.
  • You grow the patent portfolio, proactively identifying filing opportunities, etc. You coordinate Freedom-to-Operative activities.
  • You keep updated on the latest relevant technological information in identified sectors through literature & patent reviews, participation to conferences and visits of universities and research institutes. You identify and make recommendations on potential collaboration projects or participation to funded projects.



  • You have a PhD in chemistry, materials science or electrochemistry with recognized expertise in the field of active materials for Lithium-Ion batteries and minimum 5 years’ experience in R&D project management.
  • You are fluent in English, knowledge of French, Dutch or German are a plus
  • You are computer literate.
  • You have excellent networking skills, able to proactively build functional relations inside and outside the company.
  • You have strong analytical skills, able to assess & summarize(numerical) information and share knowledge and expertise with others.
  • You are a good peoplemanager, able to manage a remote team.
  • You work autonomously, have a natural sense for initiative and are result driven.
  • You are an excellent communicator, verbally and written and experienced to operate in an international environment.
  • You are willing to travel worldwide.

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