Suffolk Business Awards 2022: Celebrating businesses that are breaking the mould

Young business people are discussing together a new startup project. A glowing light bulb as a new i

The Innovation Award category will recognise a business that has a trail-blazing product or service, or has innovated disruption within a traditional industry - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

The Innovation Award at the Suffolk Business Awards 2022 will be presented to a business that is breaking new ground and delivering impressive results. Professor Gurpreet Jagpal from the University of Suffolk, a judge for this award, tells us why innovation is so crucial for businesses. 

Why were you keen to get involved in the Suffolk Business Awards? 

My role as pro vice-chancellor of business and entrepreneurship involves leading Suffolk Business School and the University’s business engagement and entrepreneurship activities. 

We are very outwardly focussed in what we do and always looking to work with innovative and disruptive individuals and firms to support their growth and in turn for them to support us. 

What do you bring to the judging process? 

After over 20 years in higher education leadership, I have been fortunate to work with innovative educators and businesses around the world, so I bring a global perspective married to a deep understanding of Suffolk’s business needs. 

What have your previous experiences of judging been like? 

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Every experience of judging is a big responsibility – in almost every case, entries for awards are of an extremely high standard and winning would mean a lot to the business. 

This means I bring very careful consideration to the judging role – it is an honour to participate and the result has always been tremendously enriching. 

Professor Gurpreet Jagpal, pro vice-chancellor of business and entrepreneurship at the University of Suffolk

Judge Professor Gurpreet Jagpal is pro vice-chancellor of business and entrepreneurship at the University of Suffolk - Credit: University of Suffolk

What inspires you in business? 

As businesses we exist to address a particular challenge or problem, and for me the inspiration is being able to see the positive impact we are having on others. 

It is always inspiring to hear stories of success as a result of the work we do, and this drives us to continue our work and always look to be more innovative and creative.   

What will you be looking for in the winner? 

I will particularly be looking for an individual that has shown true innovation with a new product or service that disrupts the marketplace, thereby solving problems that can transform lives. 

This is a fantastic category to be judging and I’m really looking forward to reviewing the entries. 

What advice would you give to a business that’s considering entering? 

Awards provide a great opportunity for you to pause, reflect and capture the impact you are having. 

Whether you win or not, the process of applying enables you to think and discuss internally, and then collate the evidence to support your application. 

Award criteria

Judges will be looking for an innovative business which has pioneered a trail-blazing product or service, or innovated disruption within a traditional industry, backed up with a clear and defined strategy for its implementation and growth.

Evidence should be provided of the company’s defined values and mission for change and adaptability, and its understanding of environmental impact and strategy, as well as evidence of its financial growth and investment.

To enter the Innovation Award category at the Suffolk Business Awards 2022, visit