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Things to consider

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Finding potential industry partners

You will first need to understand what it is you can offer and how your area of expertise might be of interest to a company, then carry out some background research into who they are likely to be. Discuss with peers, consult resources on web-base such as market research reports, as well as business databases.

It is recommended that you consider organisations with an R & D budget, you can generally find that information on its Annual Report.

 

Where to make contacts

Opportunities are numerous. You may wish to make contact through introductions from colleagues or at events such as conferences, exhibitions and networking opportunities.  For instance developing a relationship with a company from scratch may take some time.  However, opportunities at conferences to meet individuals from companies can be very productive.  Also, by attending events where targeted companies present (for example as an attendee at a London Technology Network) or through membership of a Knowledge Transfer Network can help to build your reputation and profile.  For further advise please contact us

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Building relationships

  • Follow up your contacts with face to face meetings during which you explore mutual interests and identify projects
  • Be prepared to start small, perhaps with Student placements, MSc projects, consultancy or membership of a research advisory board. You can work up to bigger projects as your relationship and understanding of capability develops.
  • During a project, keep them informed and, at its end, try to find the next opportunity to work together.
  • In any case, keep in touch.

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Confidentiality

Confidentiality is an important consideration in building mutual trust in our commitment to not disclose each other's commercially sensitive information

IP protection

Intellectual property is important, both in terms of protecting our own IP and protecting our collaborator's IP, as well as being realistic about who owns what is developed on the project.

Academic freedom

Freedom to publish and to carry out future research work in the area is also something you should think about when considering working with industry. That isn't to say that it should be compromised, but it is different to the freedom of research within a standard grant.

Getting support

Research & Enterprise Development (R&ED) can support and facilitate relationships between  Academics and the business community.  Please contact us for advise.

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