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What is a KTP?

Innovation is the lifeblood of any business, but how do you access and apply the expertise needed to make it happen?

Working with the University of East London (UEL) through a Knowledge Transfer Partnership could be the answer, creating a dynamic collaboration between your business and one of the UK’s world-class universities to power strategic innovation projects, embed expertise and drive commercial growth.

A Knowledge Transfer Partnership is a three way collaboration designed to bring about strategic change through introducing new skills and the latest academic thinking to deliver a specific, strategic innovation project.

The partners are:

  • a UK-based business of any size or a not-for-profit organisation,
  • an academic or research organisation such as UEL. 
  • a suitably qualified graduate, with the capability to lead a strategic business project.

The scheme can last between 12 and 36 months, depending on what the project is and the needs of the business. It is part- funded by means of a government grant which can amount to 67% of the costs of the projects for SMEs.

Transform your Business through Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

For over 40 years Knowledge Transfer Partnerships have been helping businesses innovate for growth by accessing the UK’s world-leading knowledge base.


Knowledge Transfer Partnerships can help your business:

  • Embed expertise, generate new knowledge, expand capability and foster a culture of innovation,
  • Drive competitive advantage through accelerated innovation, efficiency gains, increased revenues (new markets and NPD) and the possibility of creating Intellectual Property,
  • Gain privileged and cost-effective access to the UEL's world-class knowledge and facilities,
  • Benefit from the strategic input from a team including experienced academics and business professionals


    83% of KTPs result in long term relationships between the company and university


    Average annual increase in pre-tax profit of £1.1 million


    Average increase in exports of £967,000

    Case Studies

    UEL has a proven track record working with industry to help fuel innovation through Knowledge Transfer Partnerships.

    Intelligent Voice Ltd - Innovating video conferencing using augmented reality

    Project Summary:

    The aim of this partnership is to enhance video conferencing by combining Augmented Reality, Automatic Speech Recognition, Natural Language Processing and GPU-accelerated cloud processing to provide a more natural communication with each meeting participant's avatar superimposed into the user's real-world view.

    Intelligent Voice is a leading technology company with an innovative suite of products which are paving the way in speech to text capabilities. A London based company with offices in New York and San Francisco, Intelligent Voice is recognised worldwide for its disruptive view in the world of speech analysis. The company supplies speech recognition and other smart data systems to the financial, legal and security sectors involved in risk management and compliance. Intelligent Voice's clients include government agencies, banks, and insurers all involved in risk management.

    The company has strong capabilities in Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Graphics Processing Unit (GPU)-acceleration of voice transcription but currently has no experience with many of the research topics associated with this project, in particular:

    • Augmented Reality and 3D tele-immersion
    • Video processing and motion detection
    • Animation and personalisation of avatars
    • Audio adaptation and reconstruction

    Intelligent Voice sees Augmented Reality as being key to the next innovation in video conferencing. The University of East London team has the expertise that Intelligent Voice needs to pursue this innovative idea.

    Mediprospects Ltd - Applying data analytics to improve best practise in training

    Project Summary:

    The objective of this collaborative project is to develop an adaptive and intelligent system to understand the learner's behaviour and support needs. The primary funder of the project is Innovate UK with UEL being the knowledge base partner.

    Mediprospects Ltd is an independent training provider delivering ESFA funded learning programmes since 2007. With the delivery profile increasing year on year, administration and record-keeping process needed upgrade with no 'off-the-shelf' product available in the market to fully meet the business needs.

    The project, along with other benefits, will result in:

    • Improved performance in data retention and use to achieve business goals
    • Improved quality of learning and assessment delivery
    • Operational savings through automated processes
    • New business opportunities

    Mediprospects chose to work with UEL as it felt it has a history of supporting businesses through KTP projects as such and comes equipped with very high quality academic staff who are at the forefront of their respective fields.

    As a knowledge base partner, UEL supports the project through the expertise of the named Academic Supervisor and Lead Academic. Through this project, Mediprospects also gains access to learning in data analytics and system development which are shared to develop best practices.

    Techbuyer Ltd - Using mathematical modelling and simulation tools to reduce the environmental impact of data centres

    Project summary:

    This project opens up a new avenue of work for the EC Lab to explore how the mathematical models and software tools they have, can be applied to reduce the environmental impact of data centres by minimising the embodied energy of IT equipment through redeployment and recycling. This would also help the EC Lab further increase its research impact through knowledge transfer.

    Techbuyer is a global leader in the buying, refurbishing and selling of data centre equipment. Techbuyer has decades of experience in buying used data centre equipment and selling new and refurbished IT parts, while working with thousands of private and public sector organisations across 83 countries.

    Through their partnership with UEL, they are aiming to create and embed sophisticated data centre modelling capabilities focused on driving the circular economy and the green environment agenda. The project will help Techbuyer develop scientific capabilities to model and simulate complex data centre environments, which is then used to show the return on investment over time of new vs refurbished equipment. While Techbuyer has major expertise in server and IT equipment recycling, UEL will provide key expertise in IT and data centre energy efficiency and environmental impact.

    Techbuyer will work with UEL and the Enterprise Computing Lab - EC Lab, which is considered one of the major European authorities in the field of Data Centre Energy Efficiency. The EC Lab provides policy and guidance support to various governments as well as the European Commission, and contributes widely to industry best practices, standardisation and the upskilling of the data centre sector.


    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.

    The cost of a Knowledge Transfer Partnership project is shared by the business and by Innovate UK and other government co-funders who contribute 50-67% of the project cost via a grant to the academic or research organisation.

    The business makes a cash contribution for the remaining project cost with a small-to-medium business contributing 33% (around £35,000) and a large business 50% per annum (around £55,000).

    This cost is comparable to employing a well-qualified graduate, but includes so much more:

    • Access to the exceptional resources of the University of East London
    • A dedicated team to deliver a strategic project
    • Expert academic input bringing a breadth and depth of knowledge to support the Associate and the project
    • The consultancy and guidance of a highly experienced Knowledge Transfer Adviser
    • The partnership introduces new capabilities and embeds knowledge

    Your company's contribution may qualify for R&D tax credits.

    Get in Touch

    Mansour Moniri - Director Of Research & Knowledge Exchange

    • Phone: 020 8223 4241
    • Email: M.Moniri@uel.ac.uk
    • Knowledge Dock Business & Innovation Centre, 4-6 University Way, London, E16 2RD