Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP)

A Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) is a programme designed to help businesses improve their competitiveness and productivity through better use of knowledge, technology and skills.  A KTP is a three-way project partnership between a business, Keele University and a recently-qualified high-calibre graduate known as the Associate.

By working with Keele University your business will gain:

  • A full-time high-calibre graduate to spearhead a new innovation and growth project
  • Ongoing bespoke business support from an expert academic employed by Keele University
  • Access to the University’s extensive resources, including facilities and skills
  • A tailor-made strategic business development project with high levels of innovation to meet your company’s needs
  • Access to a travel, equipment and training budget for the graduate whilst working on the project
  • Wider support and opportunities offered by links to the Knowledge Transfer Network - Innovate UK's delivery partner.


Part of the cost of a KTP is funded by a grant, applied for in a competitive bid for submissions from the national innovation agency, Innovate UK, and other government co-funders. There is a success rate for applications of around 90%. The remainder of the project cost is met through the business.

The cost of a KTP is comparable to employing a well-qualified graduate, but includes so much more.  Project costs are variable, but up to 67% of the total KTP budget for SMEs is met by Government funding (for larger companies, this is up to 50%). In certain cases, the KTP may also be eligible for Research and Development tax credits.

How to apply

To apply for a KTP, companies should:

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

For more information on the opportunities available, please contact one of the Business Gateway team:

KTP Triad logo Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs)

For more information about Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, please visit the national website at

Keeling and Walker case study image

"The KTP project has influenced the company far beyond its original aim. We have now expanded our range of infra-red products that better suit the needs of our clients and have a responsive capacity to keep up with demand"

Dr Deiter Guhl, Managing Director, Keeling and Walker

Read more about Dr Deiter Guhl, Managing Director, Keeling and Walker

KTP Information Sheet (Updated June 2018)

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