• Multiple Perspectives on the Challenges for Knowledge Transfer between Higher Education Institutions and Industry

      Lockett, Nigel; Kerr, Ron; Robinson, Sarah (2008)
      Knowledge transfer (KT) has been identified as an essential element of innovation, driving competitive advantage in increasingly knowledge-driven economies and as a result recent UK Government reports have sought to increase awareness of the importance of KT within higher education institutions (HEIs). There is therefore a need for relevant empirical research that examines, from multiple perspectives, how KT policy is translated into practice within HEI contexts. This paper responds to this need by presenting an in-depth qualitative case study based on over 50 semi-structured interviews with university-based academic and non-academic participants and representatives of small firms involved in InfoLab21, a high profile `centre of excellence¿ for research, development and commercialisation of ICT in Northwest England, UK. The study considers what the key practices of KT are and what promotes and/or hinders their development. Four overarching themes are identified: i) motivation and reward mechanisms; ii) process management and evaluation; iii) clustering and brokerage; and iv) trust and bridge building. Each theme is considered from multiple perspectives and areas for further research are suggested.