KTP for Businesses

A Knowledge Transfer Partnership empowers businesses to access cutting-edge research, technology, and expertise from academic institutions, facilitating innovation and enhancing their competitive advantage. By collaborating with knowledge bases, companies can address specific challenges and implement practical solutions, leading to process improvements, technical advancement and optimised operations. This access to academic knowledge accelerates product and service development enabling businesses to stay ahead in a rapidly evolving market.

A Knowledge Transfer Partnership project may involve:

  • Refining existing products or designing new products.
  • Opening new markets for new or existing products.
  • Improving business, marketing or manufacturing systems.
  • Cutting costs and waste to run the business more efficiently.

Companies from a range of sectors can apply for a KTP. To be eligible, companies should:

  • Have at least five employees
  • Have been running for at least two years
  • Have the infrastructure to support the KTP Associate and the project

How can a KTP benefit your business?

  • You will have access to world leading expertise and facilities from specialist researchers & academics to help develop solutions to business challenges
  • A high-quality graduate will be based in your business to deliver your project
  • Increased revenue & profit growth or efficiency savings
  • Potential for new IP
  • Positive environmental and social impact
  • New/improved products/services
  • Expert support from a dedicated advisor from Innovate UK KTN
  • Eligibility for research & development tax relief

On average, benefits that can be expected from a KTP project are*:

  • £113k one-off increase in net profit during the KTP
  • Projected increase of over £1m in annual profits before tax
  • The creation of two new jobs
  • An increase in the skills of existing staff

(*latest statistics from Innovate UK)

What support will you receive?

Lancaster University has a dedicated Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) office, which offers comprehensive support to businesses across the UK, fostering meaningful collaborations with our academic teams. We guide businesses through the eligibility and funding application phase, identifying the right academic research team, project planning process, Associate recruitment, and project implementation. Our friendly and knowledgeable team will help with;

  • Discussions around strategic needs, project scope and how likely is the project to be funded
  • Coordinating and advising on your application and managing the submission process, to maximise chances of success. The success rate of submitted applications is currently around 85-90%
  • Recruitment of the Associate who will be employed by LU but based within your business
  • Providing ongoing support to your KTP project, helping with the administration, financial management and overseeing any requirements for reporting to funders


KTPs are part-funded by a grant administered through UKRI Innovate UK, with the company partner contributing the balance to ensure the full cost of the project is met.  The amount the company contributes is different for SMEs (33%) and large enterprises (50%).

Companies can apply for R&D tax relief, potentially reducing costs further. The cost to a company is usually less than them recruiting a graduate directly, plus they get the additional benefits through accessing academic expertise and university facilities.

Case Studies

See our case studies for some examples of KTPs we have run.

Contact Us

If you are interested in being part of a KTP, please contact:

Julia McFarlane KTP Manager

+44 (0)1524 594140