Knowledge transfer professionals in the UK and Ireland now have their own professional body. The Institute of Knowledge Transfer (IKT), which officially launches on 9 May 2007, brings together the people who help to turn world-class research in science, the arts and social sciences into products and processes that can enhance the competitiveness of the UK and Ireland.
Recent heavy investment in R&D and the need to create wealth from ideas has put the spotlight on this young profession. The Institute will offer professional accreditation, help with structured career progression and promote good practice and continuing professional development.
Nearly 10,000 knowledge transfer professionals work in universities, industry and public sector research organisations in the UK and Ireland. Their role is to improve the exchange and application of knowledge from R&D, intellectual property and use their expertise to support business growth and community needs.
Business, regional development bodies and central Government have long recognised knowledge transfer as an essential component of regional and national economic development. All the major public and private sector organisations in the UK involved in knowledge transfer have supported the development of the Institute.
President and Chairman of the IKT Sir Brian Fender said: “The UK and Ireland leads the world in establishing this type of professional body. Our aim is to give people working in knowledge transfer – whether in business, independent research, universities, public sector research organisations, or technology organisations - better career opportunities, widespread recognition for the value of what they do and the opportunity to involve themselves in networking with clients and colleagues around the world.”
The IKT’s launch event on 9 May at the British Library will be attended by representatives of key organisations in the UK and Ireland, together with colleagues from European countries. Key speakers include former science minister, Lord Sainsbury; Chief Executive of the Higher Education Funding Council for England, Professor David Eastwood.Director-General of the CBI and author of the Lambert Review of Business Industry collaboration, Richard Lambert.