John Swinney and Alice Brown at the Interface Excellence Awards 2014

Earlier this month we launched the first ever Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards.  These awards build upon the previous Interface Excellence Awards and ensure that all academic and business collaborations can be recognised, not only those that facilitated by Interface, Interface Food & Drink or Innovation Voucher Funding.

Launching the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards will provide a platform to celebrate many achievements and successes including the outstanding track record of Scottish academia in the co-creation of innovative products, processes and services from knowledge exchange, to celebrate Interface’s 10th Anniversary and to celebrate the 2016 Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design. 

We have been delighted to hear of the ongoing successes of previous Interface award winners who continue to be in the spotlight; Mara Seaweed, winners of the Sustainable Partnership Award, produces an award-winning range of shake-on seaweed seasonings and healthy salts and marketed as "Flavours of Scotland". Mara launched in Harrods in 2014 and is now on sale in M&S nationwide. Filling the Western demand for high flavour, healthy salt alternatives, Mara is now making inroads into the Asian market, where seaweed is part of the daily diet.   Their accolades continue with a nomination for the Best Producer Finalist in 2015 BBC Food & Farming Awards.  

Perth based Loadfast Systems who were winners of Innovation of the Year through their partnership with Glasgow Caledonian University have been extending their international customer base throughout Georgia, Louisiana and Texas in the US  visiting over 50 clients to discuss their unique engineering products.

Applying for and attending awards events are important milestones for companies and academics - not the least of which is to inspire everyone to always look to the pursuit of excellence. Entering awards contests, for some businesses and academic teams is one element of a larger set of marketing possibilities. Completing the application form, making the short list and winning provide opportunities to reflect on achievements, to elevate team morale and to create a buzz and recognition amongst peers as ones to watch.

The award categories for the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards recognise all the key ingredients for successful academic – business partnerships;

  • Innovation of the Year Award, for the development of an innovative product, process or service;
  • the Sustained Partnership of the Year Award,  for a collaboration that has demonstrated a long term partnership;
  • the Outstanding Contribution to Knowledge Exchange Award, recognising an individual who has played a pivotal role in the knowledge exchange within Scotland;
  • the Multi-Collaborative Project Award, for groups of companies who are working with academia for mutual benefit;
  • and the newly created Building Skills Through Knowledge Exchange Award which recognises Postgraduates or Knowledge Transfer Partnership Associates who have worked within a business to increase innovation.

Our hope is that the event will illustrate to other businesses the wealth of benefits that partnering with Scotland’s world-leading academic and research institutions can bring and inspire them to Go DO. 

Can businesses afford not to?

To find our more about the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards, to apply and to register your attendance visit