Innovate and Grow with the Knowledge Transfer Partnership
What is the Knowledge Transfer Partnership?
The Knowledge Transfer Partnership Scheme has been a UK-wide programme which for the past 40 years has been helping businesses to improve their competitiveness and productivity by better using knowledge, technology, and skills that reside in the UK’s knowledge base.
Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) bring together businesses and universities to help solve real-world commercial challenges. Each project recruits a graduate who acts as the conduit allowing the knowledge from the university that delivers the project for the business and can help solve specific problems within the business.
Who can take part
Each KTP is a 3-way partnership between:
- a UK-based business of any size or a not-for-profit organisation (including social enterprises and charities)
- a knowledge base. This could be a university, college, research and technology organisation or Catapult in the UK
- a suitably-qualified graduate, with the capability to lead a strategic business project.
The Knowledge Transfer Partnership Scheme focuses on making businesses adopt new ways of thinking and innovation that improves competitiveness and productivity for the future.
The Knowledge Base will help you develop the project, provide academic input and recruit a suitable graduate for the business. They will act as the employer of the associate, who then works at the business for the majority of the project.
The scheme can last between 12 and 36 months, depending on what the project is and the needs of the business.
Knowledge Transfer Partnership success story
Business owner commitment
The Knowledge Transfer Partnership programme is partially funded by a grant, which means that businesses are expected to contribute funds as well.
The level of contribution that a business should make will depend on the scale of the project and also on the size of your business.
- small medium sized enterprises (SMEs) tend to contribute around £35,000 per year – or about a third of the project cost
- large businesses contribute around £55,000 per year – or about half of the project cost
How to apply
All applications must be led by a knowledge base, working with a business.
If you already have a partnership with an academic institution or researcher, contact that partner’s KTP office.
If you’re interested in taking part in a KTP but don’t already have a knowledge base partner, you should contact KTN. They will:
- check the feasibility of your idea and tell you if it is suitable
- help you contact knowledge bases that can assist you in developing a KTP application
Submitting an application
KTP applications must come from registered knowledge bases.
In order to be approved for a KTP, a partnership proposal must be submitted jointly by the prospective business and the knowledge base.
Each proposal is assessed by Knowledge Transfer Advisers appointed by Innovate UK.
It should include information about each of the participants, their objectives, the proposed tasks and deliverables for the associate.
Applications are assessed by an expert group of assessors. You will normally be notified within 12 weeks or less of the competition closing. If your partnership is successful, you will then receive a formal grant offer letter.
After the offer is accepted, you must recruit a partner. Recruitment should be undertaken by both the knowledge base and business partner. The associate’s contract of employment will be with the knowledge base.
Dates and deadlines
The KTP programme runs continuously throughout the year. This table contains the list of current open and close dates for all KTP competitions.
Please check these dates regularly as they may change.
Need more support?
It all begins with the registration process. You will be asked if you would like to meet with an advisor, this is your opportunity to get a free needs assessment to find out more information as well as get insight into more government support that can help you grow your business.
Click here to register your business.
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