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Global AI Innovation Director

AstraZeneca UK

Location: Cheshire East

Job Type: Full time


Job Title: Global AI Innovation Lead

Location Gothenburg SWE, Barcelona ESP, Macclesfield UK, Mississauga CAN

Salary: Competitive & Excellent Benefits Package

Be empowered to be innovative and creative where difference is valued

Join a place built on innovation and creativity. Where different views and perspectives are welcomed and valued. An environment that fosters inclusion, and teams that reflect the diversity of the communities that we serve.

It propels each of us forward, harnessing our differences to unlock challenges and bring new solutions. Unleash your curiosity and entrepreneurial spirit to uncover new insights that challenge conventions.

Here we are forever pushing the boundaries as we feel comfortable spotting opportunities, making quick decisions and taking sensible risks

This role focusses on the development and leadership of externally focused AI innovation capabilities and processes. On behalf of R&D, large network of volunteers to define areas of focus where AI innovation is required, and engage with the external network of start-ups and commercial vendors to attract, develop and deploy innovative solutions adding new value that otherwise would not have been possible.

Typical Responsibilities

  • Lead a DS&AI central program (Center of Excellence) for externally focused AI innovation capabilities and processes, on behalf of R&D
  • Work with AZ AI subject matter experts (SMEs) and vendors to understand AI trends
  • Reflect the R&D data and AI strategic direction for future capability needs to the external AI innovation ecosystem
  • Develop, implement and refine an AI playbook for R&D
  • Work with AI experts to evaluate external solution providers for fit to R&D AI capability needs
  • Secure engagement from R&D partners to the process and to invest in solution providers
  • Create and complete innovative business models that meet the needs of both R&D and solution providers
  • Monitor a portfolio of projects initiated under the AI playbook process, reporting on value
  • Excite the external ecosystem of start-ups, vendors, peer-organizations, demonstrating that AZ is a partner of choice
  • Establish external and internal networks to ensure identification and capture of relevant opportunities. Attend relevant external meetings and conferences to search for and find opportunities
  • Manage a team to deliver the above, gaining commitment where volunteer task-force delivery is required

People management (direct/indirect reports)

  • Up to 30, matrix manag


  • Experience in leading multiple, large, international, multi-functional project teams of senior professionals.
  • Broad knowledge of pharmaceutical business, process and activities
  • Knowledge of deal structures and legal principles
  • Experience working with start-up
  • Extensive experience in Business Strategy and Portfolio within a pharmaceutical or clinical background
  • Strong analytical skills and ability to ascertain the relevant issues from large masses of information.
  • Strong interpersonal and team leadership skills
  • Experience and effectiveness in the presentation of written and oral cases to the most senior AZ Management.
  • Numerate and having financial literacy
  • Proven negotiation skills and experience of working in an intense deal environment.
  • Gravitas and experience to create a positive relationship with third parties as an AZ Ambassador.


  • Masters degree, e.g. MBA
  • Expert reputation within the business and industry
  • Knowledge of AI concepts
  • Knowledge of R&D principles and processes
  • Good knowledge of disease areas, and drug development activities and commercial processes and especially within AZ. Existing deep scientific knowledge and an established external network in a relevant therapy area is an advantage

Why AstraZeneca?

At AstraZeneca when we see an opportunity for change, we seize it and make it happen, because any opportunity no matter how small, can be the start of something big. Delivering life-changing medicines is about being entrepreneurial - finding those moments and recognizing their potential.

Join us on our journey of building a new kind of organization to reset expectations of what a bio-pharmaceutical company can be. This means we’re opening new ways to work, pioneering innovative methods and bringing unexpected teams together. Interested? Come and join our journey.

So, what’s next?

Are you ready to bring new ideas and fresh thinking to the table? Brilliant! We have one seat available and we hope it’s yours.

Where can I find out more?

Our Social Media, Follow AstraZeneca on LinkedIn

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Follow AstraZeneca on Instagram


Date Posted


Closing Date


AstraZeneca embraces diversity and equality of opportunity. We are committed to building an inclusive and diverse team representing all backgrounds, with as wide a range of perspectives as possible, and harnessing industry-leading skills. We believe that the more inclusive we are, the better our work will be. We welcome and consider applications to join our team from all qualified candidates, regardless of their characteristics. We comply with all applicable laws and regulations on non-discrimination in employment (and recruitment), as well as work authorization and employment eligibility verification requirements.