Innovations to take the industry further

Li Huang is Business Team Lead at imec’s Holst Centre. Joining in 2006, Li was part of the organization’s original team, working as Researcher in wireless communication. One of the main reasons he still enjoys working at imec after sixteen years is that “they see your potential”. Li has progressed from Researcher to Senior Researcher, Project Manager, Senior Business Development Manager and now Business Team Lead, a role in which he represents imec at an international level.

Scientific knowledge

“I came to Eindhoven to continue my PhD research at the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e), having started at the National University of Singapore (NUS). At the time, Philips had a strong presence in Singapore, fostering academic collaboration between TU/e and NUS. It was through one of their joint PhD programs that I was able to go to Eindhoven.”

“My PhD research topic explored ‘Reduced-complexity signal processing techniques for multiple-input multiple-output storage and wireless communication systems. This was an area in which imec, Holst Centre’s founding partner, had published a considerable number of articles. I read all those articles, I already knew many of the scientists on a personal level.” 

“When I started looking for a job, my PhD supervisor at TU/e alerted me to the fact that imec was setting up a new R&D facility in Eindhoven with TNO, which would eventually become the Holst Centre. Given imec’s world renowned expertise in wireless R&D, I opted to join this new facility. At imec, I would be able to pursue my work in cutting-edge wireless technologies.”

Interaction and technical background

“The main reason I still work here is that that they see your potential. Having begun researching in an area close to my PhD research topic, I progressed to Senior Researcher, then Project Manager. Between 2015 and 2020, I was entrusted with a few substantial projects involving multiple international partners. Each partner would require their own communication strategy. That suited me very well. These discussions and interactions were centered around the best ways we could work together. Nowadays, I get to focus more on potential clients, overseeing everything up to the signing of the contracts, as opposed to what comes after.”

“Imec has given me the opportunity to grow and put my acquired knowledge and experience to the test. This combination of a technical background with a commercial skillset is quite unique.”

Never a dull moment

“Another reason why I enjoy working at imec are the innovations we get to work on, innovations that have the potential to take the industry forward. This means there is never a dull moment. We see the potential in developing new technologies, but this can give rise to a whole host of challenges during their research phase. These too make my job rather interesting.”


In his current role, Li is responsible for undertakings that go beyond Holst Centre itself. He oversees all connectivity and IoT business development activities for imec and its affiliated university groups, not only in Leuven, Ghent, Brussels, and Antwerp, but also in Florida and with OnePlanet. While his job may be international in nature, Li feels very much at home in Eindhoven, where he has enjoyed living since completing his PhD. “It is a very international city, with an outstanding university and a plethora of well-known big companies. It is a great environment to live and work in. Given that my work often feels like a hobby, this is tremendously important.”

Who: Li Huang

From: China

Role: Business Team Lead

Since: October 1, 2006