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December 4, 2019

Northumbria University is working with businesses through Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) to strengthen the relationship between academia and industry, and support new innovation

The UK Industrial Strategy acknowledges the importance of innovation to enable businesses to have an impact and encourages industries to build new collaborations, develop new approaches and take advantage of the latest research.

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) are an Innovate UK programme, designed to encourage collaboration between academia and industry, facilitating the transfer of knowledge and technology to increase competitivity, promote a culture of innovation and economic growth.

KTPs are open to SMEs and large organisations, can last between 12 months and three years, and are supported by Innovate UK with a grant for 50- 67 per cent of the project costs.

However, Innovate UK has also introduced a new programme designed to inject significant management expertise that expands business capability, increases productivity and enables lasting change and growth. The initiative is called Management Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (MKTP), and they aim to help organisations grow by extending the management skills within them and embedding improved management practices.

MKTPs link companies with the UK’s world- class business schools, of which Northumbria University is one, and spans all key business areas – from marketing to IT, creativity to strategic management, and HR to employment relations.

Matthew Sutherland, senior lecturer at Northumbria’s Newcastle Business School, says: “I am confident the MKTPs can be a successful vehicle for boosting UK business productivity and that we at Northumbria University are well-placed to collaborate with business partners to drive that success.”

Northumbria University has a track record of excellence in multi-disciplinary KTPs across many different industries and sectors.

Northumbria has recently secured three new KTPs. In the first, it will be working with charity The SportsAid Trust, which helps promising young athletes with financial support, recognition and personal development opportunities.

Taking a multi-disciplinary approach, Northumbria academics from subject areas including business, health and life sciences, and computer science will work alongside colleagues at SportsAid to develop new ways to support athletes and develop new processes for monitoring performance. Additionally, academics and PhD students will partner with Newcastle-based business services specialist CheaperGroup and ESS Modular, a leader in UK and Ireland in offsite modular construction.

Most recently Epigem, a micro-engineering company based in Redcar, established a KTP with Northumbria University. The aim was to create a medical device to test for a range of diseases such as Bovine Tuberculosis and Johne’s disease (paratuberculosis) in cattle.

The KTP has resulted in Epigem taking a whole new approach to product development through the incorporation of product design. Thanks to the KTP, Epigem will be able to reach new markets by designing and producing own-brand, consumer- ready products.

Northumbria University
If your business is working on a project that would benefit from a new way of thinking, a KTP or MKTP could be the solution. Find out more email: businessenquiry@northumbria. or visit:

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