KTPs appeal to a broad cross-section of UK businesses. Whether small or large, private or public, commercial or not-for-profit, the appeal of KTPs is universal for organisations seeking strategic change which will contribute to economic growth.
KTPs recruit the brightest and the best graduates and postgraduate researchers to act as associates. They’re the vital link; based at the company but supervised by the university, they lead projects lasting from six months to three years.
Professors, senior lecturers and researchers provide expert support, supervising the associate and sharing technical expertise and innovation with the company. KTPs enable academic researchers to transfer their findings into practice.
KTPs aim to increase the interaction between academia and industry and facilitate a path for research to impact business development and growth directly. Whilst delivering a single project, each partner: the company, associate and university have different but complementary objectives.
For the company
To give businesses an unrivalled opportunity to make a strategic impact on their company, developing specialised competencies by linking with cutting-edge university research, and working with a high-calibre graduate who is likely to stay with the company after the project is completed.
For the associate
To provide company-based training and a significant level of early-career responsibility for recently qualified graduates to enhance their business and specialist skills through managing the practical implementation of researched solutions.
For the university
To enable universities to transfer research into practice, gain recognition for their insights and build links with industry whilst stimulating and enhancing business-relevant training, teaching and study.
KTPs are used in a rich variety of projects. The key benefits reported by most business partners are:
- improved access to technological, scientific or management expertise
- recruitment of highly-qualified people to lead new projects
- the opportunity to gain competitive advantage and
- the chance to embed an innovation culture into the company.
- increased overall value of business
- improved quality and operations
- increased sales and access to new markets and
- new job creation.
Associates benefit from:
- enhanced career prospects through managing challenging projects central to a company's strategic development and long-term growth
- a competitive salary, access to a generous personal development budget and an option to register for a higher degree
- the opportunity to make an impact on a business from day one
- good prospects of gaining full-time employment with the host company; 75% are offered jobs following their KTP.
Universities benefit from being able to:
- apply knowledge and expertise to important business problems
- develop business-relevant teaching, research materials and services
- identify new research themes and projects
- publish high-quality research papers
- gain improved understanding of business requirements and operations
- lead rewarding collaborations with innovative businesses
- assist strategic change in businesses.
The Technology Strategy Board administers all KTPs and is the major funder (Innovate UK). There are 12 additional KTP funding organisations, including government departments and research councils. Knowledge Transfer Partnerships receive significant funding - companies are eligible for grants; up to 67 per cent for SMEs and up to 50 per cent for large companies. The company partner meets the balance of the costs.
The University of Brighton KTP Centre supports the development of all KTP programmes, writing grant proposals, and administering all aspects of the project from recruitment to project reporting and finances so the core team can focus on delivering the project. The KTP Centre has a 100 per cent success rate in gaining funding for eligible partnerships.
If the project seeks to achieve an advance in overall knowledge or capability in a field of science or technology through the resolution of scientific or technological uncertainty, companies may qualify for Research and Development tax relief on their KTP expenditure and should consult their company accountant for further information.