Exchanging Business Know-How

Knowledge Exchange Manager Alisdair Ritchie talks knowledge exchanges and technology transfers as it is widely recognised that business experts and academic specialists working together can help industry explore new and exciting opportunities.

Alisdair-RitchieAs someone who works in knowledge exchange and technology transfer, I am often met with blank looks when I refer to them.

The main aim of knowledge exchange is to take the key scientific discoveries and knowledge within the academic community and move them forward by collaborating with industry towards an end result where they can be commercially exploited and can take the eventual journey into a marketable industry product. This can be done in a number of ways but all of them revolve around joint ventures with industry where partners can share the risk involved in developing academic ideas and concepts into the hard reality of commercial products.

One example of knowledge exchange I have been involved with is the UK-CITE project which will draw on academic expertise from our Centre for Mobility and Transport. The centre will collaborate with a group of organisations led by Jaguar Land Rover and Visteon, supported by HORIBA MIRA, Siemens, Huawei, Vodafone, University of Warwick, Coventry City Council, and Highways England.

What we are aiming to do is to bring together multiple communication technologies (including 4G, WiFi, and Dedicated Short Range Communication or DSRC) for the purpose of testing both the technical and commercial viability of a road network “Connected Corridor” as a foundation for Vehicle to Vehicle (V2V), Vehicle to Infrastructure (V2I), and automated cars. The project will establish a living lab test environment to attract manufacturers and suppliers to use the UK as a hub for connected and automated vehicle research and development.

The ultimate goal of connected and automated vehicles is to improve safety, efficiency and convenience. The research carried out will focus on human factors and traffic modelling.

As with all research, we need to understand if, and to what extent, people will use and respond to these new technologies and we need to ensure we design them so that people will fully utilise them.  I feel this new exploration into new technology is an exciting and major development into how we use roads in the future – along with other interesting new technologies being looked into.

This is just a snapshot of the progressive and innovative ways knowledge exchange can be used to help towards providing real-life solutions to challenges experienced within industry.  We have the academic knowledge and the expertise but we then have a duty to share it with the specialists and experts within the business world.

If you would like to discuss the meaning of knowledge exchange and technology transfer, please don’t hesitate to contact me anytime.

Alisdair Ritchie
Knowledge Exchange Manager

Tel: 02477 685543

Email Alisdair

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