Ivan McKee, MSP, Minister for Business, Trade, Tourism and Enterprise, met with winners of the 7th Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards today (Friday, 6 May).
Mr McKee was introduced to the winners of four of the categories by Laura Goodfellow, Interface’s Interim Director, at an event at Glasgow Science Centre.
After the event, Mr McKee said: “It was great to meet with the winners of this year’s Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards and to hear from them in person about the positive impact their thought-provoking and innovative projects are having across Scotland.
“I would like to again congratulate all of those who received an award. As set out in our recently published National Strategy for Economic Transformation, our vision is for innovation to be an integral part of our culture, our society and our economy.
“I look forward to hearing about the further success of these inspiring projects in the near future.”
Laura Goodfellow added: “It has been fantastic to celebrate with some of the winners of the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards today. The Awards took place in March this year online because of the pandemic, however we really wanted to bring people together in person at a later date to mark their incredible achievements and share their stories with Mr McKee and each other, particularly with 2022 being Scotland’s Year of Stories.”
The winners were a combination of businesses, third sector organisations and universities which had collaborated, or individuals recognised for their achievements in knowledge exchange.
The Minister met Innovator of the Future winner, Juliette Farrell, Knowledge Transfer Partnership Associate from University of Strathclyde, who collaborated with Glasgow-based Elite Contract Furniture, to develop an e-commerce site for a new product.
He was also introduced to Professor Murray Pittock, University of Glasgow, who won Knowledge Exchange Champion for projects including his role in the Kelvin Hall development, the Scottish Heritage Partnership report on VR and the Heritage Sector, the Robert Burns and the Scottish Economy report and its new methodology for measuring economic impact and brand value, and his placemaking consultancy with Barclays Bank in the International Financial Services District.
Dr Marco Gilardi, University of the West of Scotland, scooped the Knowledge Exchange Heroes award. Mr McKee heard about Dr Gilardi’s involvement with industry and how it benefits students, university staff and organisations such as Paisley-based start-up, The VR Hive and the Scottish Crannog Centre in Kenmore.
Winners of the Making a Social Difference award – University of Edinburgh, the Scottish Schools Education Research Centre and the Glasgow Science Centre, explained to Mr McKee the impacts of collaborating to improve the quality of science education for young, underserved children through interactive games, a new exhibition design framework and teacher training.
Interface, which organises the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards annually, is planning further regional events in the coming weeks to celebrate the other winners.