Knowledge Transfer Partnerships - Nov 2020 to Jan 2021
You can improve your business’ competitiveness and productivity through funded partnerships with academics and researchers. Management KTPs are also available, with a separate dedicated funding pot. Next round will open 8th Feb 2021.
What is a Knowledge Transfer Partnership?
The Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) scheme helps businesses in the UK to innovate and grow. It does this by linking them with an academic or research organisation and a graduate.
A KTP enables a business to bring in new skills and the latest academic thinking to deliver a specific, strategic innovation project through a knowledge-based partnership.
There is a parallel scheme for Management KTPs (mKTPs); these aim to enable transformational improvement by identifying key, strategic, management-based initiatives to increase business effectiveness, via novel and innovative partnerships with the UK’s world class Business Schools. The funding for mKTPs comes from a separate dedicated funding pot, but the application process is the same, with the same dates. Find out more about mKTPs here.
The academic or research organisation partner will help to recruit a suitable graduate, known as an Associate. They will act as the employer of the graduate, who then works at the company for the duration.
The scheme can last between 12 and 36 months, depending on what the project is and the needs of 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
- an academic or research organisation. This could be a university, college or research and technology organisation in the UK
- a suitably-qualified graduate, with the capability to lead a strategic business project
KTP for businesses
Taking part in a KTP can help you to develop your business. You can get academic expertise that you don’t have in-house. This can improve your business performance and help you to become more competitive and productive.
A KTP is part-funded by a grant. You will need to contribute to the salary of the Associate who will work with your business, plus the cost of a supervisor who will oversee the scheme.
The amount you will need to contribute depends on the scale and length of the project. It will also depend on the size of your company:
if you are a small to medium-sized enterprise (SME), you will need to contribute a third of the costs. The average annual contribution to a project for an SME is around £30,000.
if you are a larger business you may need to contribute half the cost. The average annual contribution to a project for a larger company is around £45,000.
KTP for academic or research organisations
Academic partners who take part in a KTP produce on average more than 3 new research projects and 2 research papers for each project.
Most academic and research organisations will have a dedicated KTP office. These offices work with the business and academic partners who intend to collaborate together to scope out the project. They can also help with the application to Innovate UK.
KTP for graduates
KTP is one of the UK’s largest graduate recruitment programmes. There are over 300 job opportunities each year. It supports career development and often leads to a permanent job.
You can find opportunities at:
How to apply
There are 2 main routes to applying for a KTP as a business.
Via a Knowledge Transfer Adviser
If you’re interested in taking part in a KTP but don’t already have a university partner, you should contact your local KTA (Knowledge Transfer Adviser). They will:
check the feasibility of your idea and tell you if it is suitable
find the right academic or researcher to work on your project
Via the academic or research organisation
If you already have a partnership with an academic or research organisation or know who you would like to work with on a KTP, you should go via that organisation’s KTP office.
There are further KTP funding opportunities all year round – click here for a list of dates.