Innovate UK funding competitions

Knowledge transfer partnerships funding


Led by Innovate UK, Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) scheme enables businesses to improve their competitiveness, productivity and performance through better use of knowledge, technology and skills.

It does so by facilitating the formation of a partnership between:

  • your business
  • an academic institute, known as the knowledge base partner
  • a recently qualified individual known as 'the associate' (usually a graduate) to facilitate the transfer of knowledge to your business

Find out more about the Innovate UK's KTP programme or watch the video below for an overview of the main features.

Taking part in KTP

Taking part in a KTP can help you to develop your business by accessing academic expertise that you don't have in-house.

A KTP is part-funded by a grant. You will need to contribute to the cost of the supervisor and the salary of the associate.

The amount you will need to contribute depends on:

  • the scale and length of the project
  • the size of your company

If you are a small to medium-sized business, you will need to contribute a third of the costs. The average annual contribution to a project for an SME is around £21,000.

If you are a larger business, you may need to contribute half the cost. The average annual contribution to a project for a larger company is around £30,000.

Eligible projects

KTP is open to any business although not all projects may be suitable. Some KTP competitions additionally target businesses working in specific industry sectors.

To find out if your project is suitable for a KTP, you can discuss your idea with:

  • a regional KTP adviser
  • a university or college KTP office
  • Invest Northern Ireland (NI) - call Invest NI helpline on Tel 0800 181 4422

Northern Ireland KTP case studies

Since KTPs began in Northern Ireland, over 600 have been completed with local companies. You can access a selection of local case studies below:

You can also find case studies of KTP projects carried out with Queen's University Belfast.

Getting support with KTP projects

Businesses in Northern Ireland can get KTP support from Invest Northern Ireland. If you'd like to discuss a potential KTP project, you should contact Invest NI's Nicola Doherty by email or Tel 028 9069 8199.

Support is also available through:

For expert advice and guidance on the full range of Innovate UK's programmes, you can contact Invest NI's Collaborative R&D Support Service on Tel 0800 181 4422.

  • Innovate UK Competitions Helpline
    0300 321 4357
  • Invest NI Helpline
    0800 181 4422