New call for Agri-food-themed KTPs announced


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The Technology Strategy Board, along with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), Invest Northern Ireland, the Scottish Funding Council and the Welsh Government, are to invest jointly up to £2.3m to establish Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) to improve the competitiveness, resilience and responsiveness of the agri-food supply chain.

The aim of this initiative is to give businesses access to the UK knowledge base so that they can develop innovative solutions to global challenges facing the agri-food sector.

Its scope spans primary production, including aquaculture, through to retail. This competition will provide new opportunities for open innovation and knowledge exchange across supply chains and sectors. It will help companies to mitigate commercial risk and improve business performance – and to achieve growth as a result.

Project proposals should address at least one of three high-level challenges:

• innovating to benefit consumer health, wellbeing and choice

• improving productivity, resource efficiency and resilience in the supply chain

• assuring safety and security across the supply chain.

Examples of potential project areas include: application of genetic and breeding approaches to crops and livestock; food safety, authenticity and traceability; improved methods to control yield/productivity loss or product quality; improving nutritional quality through better products or ingredients; modern manufacturing methods; technologies, approaches or services which support the sustained modification of consumer or employee behaviours; use of data (e.g. generation and interpretation of  large data sets relevant to the agri-food supply chain).

The call opens today (19th June) and will close on 11th Feb 2015.

For further information, read the full competition briefing on the TSB’s ‘innovateuk’ website here, or contact Dominic Collins in Enterprise & Commercial Development: Tel: 01785 353404, email:

Your views on the ‘Knowledge Transfer Chronicle’

ECD’s Knowledge Transfer and Innovation Team would greatly value your feedback about the ‘Knowledge Transfer Chronicle’ – our quarterly newsletter devoted to KTP and KEEN programmes and projects.

Essentially, we want to know if people are reading it, who is reading it, which of its features are useful, and whether the periodic newsletter format is the best way to communicate with enterprise-minded staff.

So please take five minutes to complete the following, bracingly brief survey:

Knowledge Transfer Chronicle – August 2013

Below is the August edition of Enterprise and Commercial Development’s ‘KT Chronicle’, featuring the latest on all things KTP & KEEN, including: the University’s new partnership with Lister Trade Frames, recent changes to the KTP Programme structure and application process, details of the call for shorter KTPs in multi-disciplinary software development and guidance on what to look for in a potential KTP / KEEN project and partner.

KT Chronicle August 2013

Posted by: Dominic Collins KTP Caseload Coordinator


Energy Generation and Supply – Lunchtime Webinar – KTP

Lunchtime webinar: Power Electronics – Developing a Resilient Energy System: Targeted Call for KTPs

Friday, 19 April 2013, 12.30 – 13.30 (GMT)


The Technology Strategy Board, Welsh Government and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) are to invest jointly up to £1m to establish new Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) in the area of power electronics.

They are looking to support a cohort of up to 12 KTPs UK-wide for this thematic KTP competition, with up to three of these coming from companies based in Wales. Power electronics is considered key to enabling a resilient energy system for a future UK energy mix which will include a larger percentage of renewables, connectivity to a European supergrid, community energy systems, and electric vehicle charging.

This targeted call for KTPs aims to stimulate and support supply chain innovation in power electronics and the energy sector. It is part of a £5.4m programme and is running in parallel with a £4.4m Technology Strategy Board investment in power electronics. Typical annual project costs could be in the region of £60k with a third of this being contributed by the company, in the case of an SME.

This targeted call will encourage knowledge-sharing across projects, and will facilitate effective links to the UK research base, including the developing EPSRC National Centre for Power Electronics. This will give the businesses involved access to knowledge and expertise held by a range of academic groups with different perspectives on the high-level challenges facing the industry.

To help potential KTP applicants find out more about KTPs and the current £1m targeted call we have set up this webinar session where Christian Inglis, Lead Technologist – Energy Generation and Supply, and Wendy Mannix, the Technology Strategy Board’s KTP Portfolio Manager, supported by Regional KTP Advisers will give the background to the call and will be available to answer questions from potential applicants.

Dial in details and joining instructions will be sent to registrants 24 hours before the event.

Contact Viola Augstein, if you have any further questions.

Supporting Innovation in the UK Retail Sector – full briefing released

The ESRC and TSB have now released a full briefing document for ‘Supporting Innovation in the UK Retail Sector’, the new targeted call for KTP proposals aiming to “help retail managers address the major economic, social and environmental challenges that they face, leading to new opportunities and tangible outcomes for business”. The document can be downloaded at:

 The specific aims of this call are to:

o             increase knowledge exchange between retailers and economic / social scientists*

o             develop a greater understanding of the changing nature of the UK High Street and retail spaces to drive growth, innovation and efficiency within the sector

o             stimulate and support innovations in e-commerce, m-commerce and omni-commerce, to maintain and strengthen the UK’s position as a global leader in internet retailing

o             promote and enable innovations in the use of ‘big data,’ providing insights into consumer behaviour, increasing efficiency and growth within the retail sector

o             support other innovative projects, addressing one or more sectoral challenges

 *It’s well worth academics working outside of these disciplines submitting expressions of interest, though. As the briefing makes clear (p.4)  – if the ESRC doesn’t fund them, another KTP funder might (and see also the last of the five aims, above – “other innovative projects” will be funded). Interdisciplinary and cross-faculty approaches can also be considered.

 Partners should be businesses in the retail sector that:

  • need further support to understand and respond to the challenges facing the sector;
  • are looking to access social and economic science skills and knowledge (see above) to help them innovate in dealing with these challenges; 
  • want to build and improve their capability in innovation.

 The application process is essentially the same as that for a ‘normal’ KTP and the deadline for submission is 21st August, 2013. Please contact Dominic Collins (01785 353404 / )if you’re interested.


On 25 February the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) will launch a call for retail-themed KTPs as part of its £2.5 million Retail Sector Initiative, funding collaborative research and knowledge exchange activities in the sector.  Their recent announcement states that—”Understanding the behaviours of individual people, communities and organisations is key to understanding the challenges now facing the retail sector”. They particularly welcome, therefore, proposals in the following areas:

1) the changing nature of the UK high street and changing retail spaces

2) e-commerce, m-commerce and omni-channel retailing

3) consumer (including ‘big’) data

 For more information please see the following link to the pre-call announcement on the ESRC website:

 The ESRC are holding  a launch event for the Retail Sector Initiative on 28 February 2013, further information about this event is available at the following link:

 A full briefing document will be available next week.

 Contact Dominic Collins: , ext. 3404,  for further information.