University - Industry linkages in the UK: what are the factors underlying the variety of interactions with industry?

Research Policy

This paper examines the different channels through which academic researchers interact with industry and the factors that influence the researchers? engagement in a variety of interactions. This study is based on a large scale survey of UK academic researchers.
The results show that university researchers interact with industry using a wide variety of channels, and engage more frequently
in the majority of the channels examined ? such as consultancy & contract research, joint research, or training ? as compared to
patenting or spin-out activities. In explaining the variety and frequency of interactions, we find that individual characteristics of
researchers have a stronger impact than the characteristics of their departments or universities. Finally, we argue that by paying
greater attention to the broad range of knowledge transfer mechanisms (in addition to patenting and spin-outs), policy initiatives
could contribute to building the researchers? skills necessary to integrate the worlds of scientific research and application.