Principal investigators (PIs) are ‘scientists who orchestrate new research projects, combine resources and competencies, deepen existing scientific trajectories or shape new ones that are transformative in intent, nature, and outcome that can be exploited for commercial ends and or for societal common good.’ Taking on the PI role is a significant career milestone for scientists. Scientists learn the PI role on the job. They receive no formal role preparation to take on this strategic and complex role that advances scientific knowledge and practice. PIs key responsibilities include providing scientific leadership, managing resources, disseminate scientific results and realise impact – economic, technological, societal etc. PIs also fulfil other roles including knowledge and technology transfer agent, research strategist, agent of economic policy, collaboration and value creation role.