Knowledge Exchange

20th December 2021
Written by: Glen Rutter, Interface

Knowledge Exchange 

What is Knowledge Exchange?

Principally, Knowledge Exchange is the process through which organisations can transfer their expertise, research, insights, and ideas. The two-way exchange, often between academia and industry, allows for a free flow of ideas which benefits both teams in the process.

Knowledge Exchange, often called Knowledge Transfer, is an invaluable end result of academic research. It is through the process of Knowledge Exchange that the insights and information developed through research can be understood and implemented by an end user.

However, it can often be difficult to transfer the knowledge developed within academia into practical uses. Interface provide a free and impartial service which brokers connections between Universities and Colleges to businesses, organisations and third sector companies. At Interface we understand the importance of Knowledge Exchange, so we work with companies to understand their aims and objectives and then search through all of Scotland’s universities and research institutions to find the best match for their needs.

Benefits of Knowledge Exchange for businesses

Knowledge is more than just information; knowledge is insight. Businesses benefit from Knowledge Exchange by entering into a culture which encourages the practice. At Interface we are able to brokerage connections for your business with academics, so you can access experts with practical solutions. Undoubtably the academics who have dedicated their professional lives to the subject matter will add value to your organisation.

Here are a few examples of how Knowledge Exchange can benefit your business:

  • Collaborative approaches to problem solving – putting two heads together is always better than one. Different approaches and types of experience of a subject can develop creative and innovative solutions.
  • Developing a network across Scotland – working with academics across Scotland builds a community that serves everyone.
  • Streamline your approach – once you have established connections with academics at an institution, you can build upon this relationship. This means you don’t have to go back to the drawing board each time.
  • Research and development – access high-end tools, skills, or resources if desired.
  • Accessing the latest technologies – utilise the high-end research facilities and technologies in universities. Discover more here.
  • Financial support– at Interface we can offer financial support, through Innovation Vouchers, to help offset the cost of working with academics. Discover more here.

Benefits of Knowledge Exchange for academics 

When academics collaborate with industry they increase the visibility of their research, as well as allow for it to create meaningful impact. Remember, knowledge is only powerful when it is shared. Knowledge Exchange is a great tool for an academic to make sure their research reaches as wide of an audience as possible.

Here a few other examples of how Knowledge Exchange can help benefit academia:

  • Making a positive impact on society – allow for your research to touch the lives of the people it was designed to impact
  • Testing the applications of your work – find out first-hand the practical implications of your research
  • Develop your profile – raising your visibility with the industry and the academic environment
Testimonial from Dave Hughes

How does Interface provide Knowledge Exchange? 

Interface has facilitated Knowledge Exchange between hundreds of organisations and academics. This collaborative approach to working has created and improved products, streamlined services and developed processes. Ultimately these collaborations have increased profits, maximised export potential and made organisations more sustainable.

Interface builds collaborative partnerships across all industry sectors, including:

Knowledge Exchange in Practice – Case Studies

The number of organisations and academics Interface have supported is vast. Here is a collection of case studies to highlight the range of projects we have worked on:

Through this collaboration Sustainable Thinking Scotland Community Interest Company advanced their production of biochar whilst also ensuring regulatory standards were created for its manufacturing and subsequent use. They went on to secure £190K investment to enable them to bring their technology to market.

Altitude Thinking and City of Glasgow College are tackling marine pollution by using innovative technologies in rivers and canals that are capable of monitoring water quality and collecting of marine waste. As of December 2020, they have been awarded a further £23,500 to develop this project.

Beginning your Knowledge Exchange journey with Interface is really easy. For further information, simply contact us. A member of our Business Engagement team would be delighted to help you with your enquiry. If you would like to stay in touch, feel free to sign up to our monthly newsletter.