Innovation and Knowledge Transfer

Innovative enterprises turn good ideas into economic, social or cultural benefits. To do this they need the skills to identify and select the right ideas, the knowledge to tailor them to their own needs, and the expertise to turn them into tangible benefits. Ambitious aims, but AEA has been delivering innovation and knowledge transfer for the last 20 years.

 AEA is experienced in leading productive engagement between commercial, public sector and third sector enterprises and academia, and is the UK’s foremost expert in knowledge transfer and exchange, providing access to new ideas to improve economic competitiveness and performance, as well as social and cultural enrichment. AEA is experienced in assisting businesses to analyse and identify their need for knowledge, technology and/or expertise and in identifying and accessing appropriate sources of new ideas. AEA also works in the area of capacity building and skills development, contributing to the development of the absorptive capacity of businesses for innovative ideas and their exploitation, as well as assisting businesses in identifying and pursuing the appropriate route to effective exploitation.

Our world leading experts are involved in all aspects, including: the identification of appropriate skills, technology and expertise; capacity building through the development of an innovation culture, capabilities and infrastructure; facilitation of partnerships; communications, marketing and promotion; engagement, facilitation and implementation and multi-disciplinary programme management and infrastructure development. In recognition of our leading position, AEA has been appointed by the Technology Strategy Board to manage the national Knowledge Transfer Partnerships programme. We assist UK Universities, and an increasing number of Further Education Institutions, in working with commercial enterprises of all sizes and sectors. We are engaged with over 1,000 businesses helping them benefit from the technology, skills and expertise available within the knowledge base.

AEA is directly involved in delivering innovation and knowledge transfer at the international scale. For around 10 years we have participated in UK Government and European Commission sponsored programmes focussed on developing high technology business in former Soviet-controlled countries. Our work involves generating demand from EU high technology companies and matching this to the advanced skills in science and technology available in Russia. The work includes partnership development, change management and mentoring and coaching to develop the technology offering, along with identification of appropriate financing and routes to exploitation.

AEA’s expertise in knowledge exchange has also been recognised by UK Government. The Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills appointed AEA to set up the national Sciencewise Expert Resource Centre for Public Dialogue in Science and Innovation. We advise across the public sector on policy development sharing knowledge between the scientific community, the general public and policy makers.


Understanding The Market Context

All enterprises, whether in the private, public or third sector, face the challenge of improving their performance, productivity and competitive position, and to do this within a global economy, they increasingly need to be innovative in their approach. A central theme of UK Government policy on innovation is the stimulation of productive knowledge transfer (and exchange) between UK Universities, Colleges and Research Organisations, as well as the creation of ‘business pull’ for the development of relevant research themes for the future. Government has recognised that, in order to compete on the world stage, the UK must increase the pace of innovation and technological diffusion and continue to increase in the knowledge-intensity of goods and services. For an individual business or enterprise, knowledge transfer may occur in a variety of ways; through collaborative research and development, individual structured knowledge transfer projects, consultancy, the exchange of team members, collaborative training or even the simple exchange of written material.


Our Principal Services

AEA uniquely offers services across all aspects of innovation and knowledge transfer, working with the public, private and third sectors. We work with the knowledge base to extend the scope and scale of their engagement with the business community; we help businesses to seek out and benefit from innovation as a result of closer working with the knowledge base, and we work with government in support of evidence-based policy development, implementation and assessment.


Best in Class Resource Capability

We are unique in our ability to combine world-class scientific and technical expertise with our capacity to influence, engage and to deliver beneficial change. We have over 50 knowledge transfer specialists working throughout the UK.


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