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Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) is a UK wide programme which enables companies to access knowledge, skills and technology from UK Universities.

About KTPs

How KTPs work

A Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) is a three-way collaboration between a company, a UK university, and a graduate, designed to realise a transformative business opportunity. For over 40 years, Knowledge Transfer Partnerships have been helping companies to innovate for growth by accessing the UK’s world-leading knowledge base.

Partnerships can cover any important area where there is a need for additional expertise and resources, enabling dynamic organisations to improve their competitiveness, productivity and performance.

Knowledge transfer is achieved by the University of Bath employing one or more graduate, or 'Associate', to work on a strategic project based at the company, varying in length from 2 to 3 years. An academic supervisor at the University, with relevant expertise to the programme, maintains close involvement with the graduate and organisation throughout.

The programme aims to stimulate innovation, by providing industry based training and development of talented University graduates, including post-graduates. Around 70% of associates are offered a post with the company on a permanent basis, following project completion. Companies are eligible for a grant of up to 67% as an SME or up to 50% for a larger organisation

KTPs can benefit businesses of any size and in any sector looking to address a core strategic challenge.

KTPs are funded by Innovate UK who has recently introduced new Management Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (MKTPs) for improved management practice and business performance.

KTPs explained

Find out more about what KTPs involve and how you can benefit.

Transform your business

How KTPs can help your business

Transform your business

KTPs can help your business with:

  • embedding expertise, generate new knowledge, expand capability and foster a culture of innovation
  • driving competitive advantage through accelerated innovation
  • creating Intellectual Property
  • gaining privileged and cost-effective access to the UK’s world-class knowledge base and resources
  • increasing revenue through access to new markets and new product development
  • improving profits through efficiency gains, increased productivity and better processes
  • benefiting from a highly experienced Knowledge Transfer Adviser and access to the Knowledge Transfer Network throughout the project

The cost of a KTP

How the partnership cost is shared

The cost of a KTP

The cost of a KTP project is shared by the company and Innovate UK (or other government co-funders), who contribute 50-67% of the project cost via a grant to the academic institution.

The company makes a contribution for the remaining project costs, with a small-to-medium company contributing 33% and a large business 50% per annum. This cost is comparable to employing a well-qualified graduate, but includes so much more:

  • access to the exceptional resources of the academic institution
  • 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
  • introduces new capabilities and embeds knowledge
  • wider support and opportunities offered by links to the Knowledge Transfer Network
  • companies may still be eligible to claim for R&D tax credits

Applications for KTPs enjoy a high chance of being successful, with around 90% of applications accepted.

Application criteria

What you need to know if you apply for a KTP

If you are a company or not-for-profit organisation and wish to apply you should:

  • be UK based and of sufficient size to support the project
  • have the financial capacity to make the required contribution to the cost of running a KTP
  • be aware that KTPs can have a long-term legacy, measurable over five years as well as shorter term impact
  • be able to show that your project demonstrates impact, innovation, challenge and cohesiveness


Our latest KTP news

Watch our KTP Film

Watch our KTP film to hear from KTP stakeholders; the academic, industry and associate, on the benefits of KTPs.

Contact us

Contact the KTP team at the University