Published: 9 February 2024 at 12:00
Dr Tom Williamson named on Steering Board examining disabled entrepreneurship
ARU Peterborough’s Assistant Principal Dr Tom Williamson has been appointed to the Steering Board for a major independent, Government-backed review which aims to identify, and seek to break down, challenges faced by disabled entrepreneurs.
Dr Williamson will sit on the Lilac Review Steering Board, which is jointly chaired by Victoria Jenkins, CEO and Founder of adaptive fashion brand Unhidden, the Minister for Small Business, Kevin Hollinrake MP and the Minister for Disabled People, Mims Davies MP.
Disabled entrepreneurs currently account for an estimated 25% of the nation’s 5.5million small business owners but represent only 8.6% of total small business turnover. Small Business Britain, which is also represented on the Steering Board, estimates that levelling up opportunities for these businesses could unlock an additional £230 billion in business turnover.
Undertaking research and consultation with a wide variety of stakeholders – particularly disabled entrepreneurs – the Lilac Review will share interim research findings later this year, with a final report and recommendations set for the end of 2025. Issuing an action plan to drive greater change across entrepreneurship, it will call for organisations across the UK to commit to a series of goals.
Dr Williamson said:
“It is a privilege to be invited to join the Steering Board of this vitally important project. It is clear that disabled-led businesses across the UK face a variety of challenges that is preventing many from reaching their full potential.
“A key part of ARU Peterborough’s mission is levelling up and helping to maximise the benefits of entrepreneurship on communities, and this review aligns with our goals.”