Management Knowledge Transfer Partnerships in the agrifood sector

Posted on: 16/11/2020
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Pedro Carvalho from the KTN’s AgriFood team looks at new funding available to help improve management practices in AgriFood businesses.

Effective management can transform business performance’. That is why the new Management Knowledge Transfer Partnership programme – with funding to boost management practices in AgriFood companies and other industry sectors – can have such an impact.

The AgriFood system is rather complex and only a combination of effective technical and managerial solutions will help businesses explore new opportunities, overcome the challenges facing the sector and achieve the industry’s target of net-zero by 2040.

Food availability, access, utilisation and stability are the main food security pillars, and all of these have been affected by the recent (and not so recent) challenges imposed on the AgriFood sector (e.g. population growth, climate change, decrease in crop protection active ingredients, Brexit, COVID-19, etc). 

These hurdles demand new solutions. Some of these are “technical” innovations that a “classic” Knowledge Transfer Partnership can help deliver. Other solutions require novel managerial approaches and for those the recently announced Management KTP (mKTP) can provide a vital new injection of expertise and support.

Management KTPs are tailored to Businesses (< 500 FTE) looking to address strategic management challenges. These could be around building resilience and agility; improving business performance; transforming culture. Often with a people focus, mKTP is all about improving management practices and effectiveness, and can be used in areas such as:

  • Supply chain and business process improvements
  • Market analysis, new markets and opportunities, business development
  • Benchmarking, competitor analysis, and best practice capture
  • Business scale-up practices: processes, technical, skills, automation
  • Remote working and dispersed team management, including wellbeing
  • New business models e.g. B-B to B-C
  • Risk management

For example, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic showed us how the right supply chain strategy and automation in agriculture can help AgriFood businesses thrive in difficult and unforeseeable circumstances. 

An mKTP can help businesses choose the best management strategies to make the business more agile and robust, and to transform their culture. 

Each mKTP is a tailor-made partnership with a bespoke framework that reflects the specific needs of the business. Just like the “classic” KTP, an mKTP creates a dynamic 3-way partnership between a business, a team of academic experts and a skilled graduate (known as the KTP Associate) – in a mKTP the academic experts are from a Business School. 

As with KTP, each partnership enjoys the expert input of one of the KTN’s specialist Knowledge Transfer Advisers who are there every step of the way, helping scope out the project and remaining alongside throughout to ensure its successful delivery. There are 31 Advisers based all over the UK.

With 200 mKTPs now available to be allocated in the next 18 months this is a great opportunity to move your business forward. Already, nearly 30 businesses have received funding for mKTP helping them expand their management expertise for future business success.

If you want to know more about an mKTP please visit our dedicated mKTP page here; watch our most recent webinar here; or talk to one of our expert Knowledge Transfer Advisers. You can also download a flyer here


About Management KTP

mKTP aims to help businesses improve their efficiency and productivity through the better use of knowledge and expertise held within UK Business Schools. mKTPs are funded by the UK Government Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) through Innovate UK. KTN is a delivery partner of mKTP and KTP.

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