Knowledge exchange & impact plan

Knowledge Exchange & Impact Plan 2015
The Centre for Virus Research (CVR) was created in 2010 through a partnership between the Medical
Research Council (MRC) and the University of Glasgow. Its formation has allowed the integration of
research groups involved in virology research from the University of Glasgow and the MRC Virology
Unit under a single management umbrella. In May 2013, the CVR transitioned to a fully integrated
University Unit, with the University of Glasgow as the single employer. This will enable the ongoing
and growing success of all research activity at the CVR and secure its long term sustainability.
Knowledge Exchange is the “The two-way flow of people and ideas between the research
environment and wider economy, thereby contributing to national prosperity, the quality of life of
citizens, and cultural enrichment of our society. Knowledge transfer encompasses the systems and
processes by which knowledge, expertise and skilled people transfer between the research
environment and its user communities in industry, commerce, public and service sectors”. RCUK
recognises that knowledge exchange (KE) encompasses complex and diverse activities which can
deliver impact over varying timescales.
RCUK defines impact as the demonstrable contribution that excellent research makes to society and
the economy. Impact embraces all the extremely diverse ways in which research-related knowledge
and skills benefit individuals, organisations and nations by:
 fostering global economic performance, and specifically the economic competitiveness of the
United Kingdom;
 increasing the effectiveness of public services and policy;
 enhancing quality of life, health and creative output.
Knowledge exchange (KE) and research derived impact is integral to the vision and mission of the
University of Glasgow as demonstrated in the University’s strategic plan Glasgow 2020: a global
vision – which sets out its aspiration to enhance its position as one of the world’s great, broad-based,
research intensive universities that meets the strategic needs of its stakeholders. The University has
recently published its ‘Impact and Knowledge Exchange Strategy 2013-2016’, the philosophy of which
is built around the following goals;
 Build longer term, mutually beneficial relationships with external partners
 Support our partners to achieve success through contributions to the development of
products and processes leading to economic, cultural and societal benefits;
 Inform legislation, policy and governmental guidelines for local, national and international
 Promote cultural exchange within and between communities at local, national and
international levels;
 Improve the health and wellbeing of our communities and environment;
 Create career development opportunities for our students and academics.
Central to the MRC’s mission is the promotion of knowledge transfer to improve the quality of life
and economic competitiveness of the UK. As a MRC-funded entity, knowledge transfer is therefore
an explicit part of the CVR’s mission.
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Knowledge Exchange and Impact Strategy
Our knowledge exchange and impact strategy has the following objectives:
To apply multidisciplinary approaches to study human and animal viruses and viral diseases
and realise the widest possible impact from the world class research we do.
To share our academic ‘know-how’, skills and expertise with relevant organisations.
To embed a culture of knowledge exchange, impact and engagement within the CVR and
recognise and reward staff and students involved in these activities.
To help staff and students develop the skills, expertise and knowledge to advance their
career and effectively contribute to the competitiveness of the UK.
Within the CVR, research related impacts are derived through central activities:
Consultancy: We recognise the wealth of academic ‘know-how’ within the CVR and seek to
provide high quality advice and expertise to external industry partners.
Policy advice: We recognise that our flagship Hepatitis C programme is of direct relevance to
health practitioners and policy makers. We actively contribute to the development of policy
and clinical guidelines to international inter-governmental agencies.
Collaborative and contract research: We seek to identify and create opportunities for
collaborative partnerships that add value to our research and impact activities and generate
substantive benefits for our partners.
Translation and commercialisation of research: We seek to identify opportunities to exploit
intellectual property arising from our research work through interaction with the University
and MRC Technology (MRCT).
Public engagement: We have a well developed and active public engagement programme
through which we achieve a rewarding and informative two way dialogue with the public.
Material Transfer Agreements: We are committed to sharing and distributing our resources
in support of scientific advancement in other ‘not for profit’ organisations.
Publication and communication of results: We recognise that the academic community
continues to be the immediate beneficiary of our research outputs and we strive to make all
our publications freely accessible through open access.
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Implementation of our Knowledge Exchange and Impact Strategy
Identification of end users
To achieve our Knowledge Exchange and Impact Strategy, we must target the appropriate end users
with customised knowledge exchange activities.
All staff within the CVR are encouraged to identify relevant stakeholders during the development
stages of a research project so that plans for appropriate dissemination, transfer and translation of
knowledge can be incorporated into research proposals. The appropriate stakeholders for each
research project will vary, but may include:
 The scientific community, both here in the UK and internationally. Aside from virologists, the
multi-disciplinary nature of the studies at the CVR requires engagement with fellow scientists
across a wide expanse of disciplines including clinical practitioners.
 The industrial sector, particularly pharmaceutical companies and those involved in technical
developments with commercial application.
 The NHS, national public health bodies and policy makers, with whom strong links are
essential to realise the long-term strategy of the CVR to facilitate translation of knowledge
from basic science to applications in clinical practice and public health policy that lead to
patient benefits.
 Patient interest groups and the general public.
Guidance on Activities
Consultancy & Policy Advice
o Consultancy, collaboration and confidentiality agreements are negotiated by the University
of Glasgow’s Contracts Team and stored centrally.
Collaborative and contract research
o Opportunities for collaborative research with industry are considered by the Director. The
Director’s approval is required for all new collaborations to ensure that the proposed
collaborations fall within the CVR’s remit, have scientific merit and are conducted so as not
to raise sensitivities in terms of public accountability and/or acceptability. Industrial
collaboration agreements are negotiated by the University of Glasgow’s Contracts Team and
stored centrally.
Translation and commercialisation of research
o The University of Glasgow’s Intellectual Property and Commercialisation Policy asserts
ownership of the Intellectual Property created by its staff in the course of their duties. Under
this policy, the University asserts the right to commercially exploit such Intellectual Property
by the most appropriate means whilst safeguarding academic dissemination. The policy
allows for both the University and the staff concerned to share the financial benefit of
commercial exploitation.
Together with the University of Bristol and King’s College London, the University of Glasgow
is a co-founding partner of Easy Access Innovation – a collaborative project to promote new
ways of sharing intellectual property with industry. The University aims to increase
engagement with industry, and accelerate the transfer of university knowledge and expertise
into the hands of the best commercial partner who can develop it to benefit the economy
and society.
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The CVR has implemented a mechanism which ensures that any potential IP being generated
is identified and, where appropriate, protected by patents or other means. Consideration of
patents is taken at an early stage when results with the potential for commercial exploitation
are identified, with the failsafe at the point a manuscript is being drafted, as all manuscripts
are reviewed by the Director prior to submission for publication. Potential IP is discussed
with the University of Glasgow’s IP & Licensing Manager and support is also available from
Public engagement:
o We have appointed a Public Engagement Champion, Dr David Bhella, who has taken the lead
in developing the CVR’s public engagement programme. We have also recently appointed a
Communications Officer, Mrs Siobhan Petrie. Through a range of activities, CVR staff have
the opportunity to engage the public with their research, gather feedback on public attitudes
and priorities, and enthuse the next generation of virology researchers.
Material Transfer Agreements:
o Materials Transfer Agreements (MTA) are drafted, negotiated and agreed jointly by CVR staff
and the Director, with oversight from the University of Glasgow’s Contracts Team.
Publication and communication of results:
o CVR staff and students frequently attend national and international research conferences,
communicating recent findings and results to peers and colleagues in the wider clinical and
scientific communities.
The CVR has a communications plan updated annually in consultation with the MRC Regional
Communications Manager.
We have established a website (, which provides updated information on all
activities within the CVR, including research programmes, publications, vacancies and
opportunities for postgraduate training.
In accordance with MRC policy, all papers published in scientific journals are placed in open
access journals with fees paid as necessary to ensure this.
All publications generated at the CVR are approved by the Director before submission.
The Press Offices at the University of Glasgow and MRC are available to receive papers in
advance of publication to consider if there is potential for further dissemination through
news media.
Publications are updated annually on ResearchFish.
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Support available
The University of Glasgow’s Research Strategy and Innovation Office acts as the central point
for the provision of services that support this Knowledge Exchange and Impact Strategy. CVR
staff can also call upon the support of MRCT, as required.
The CVR is supported by the Regional Communications Manager (Scotland) whose role is to
spearhead the profile of the MRC in the region, working with scientists to develop
opportunities and ideas to communicate science and engage with a wide range of audiences,
including through public dialogue, education, national and regional media, journals and
publications, stakeholder relations, parliamentary and decision-maker influencing and public
policy consultations.
University of Glasgow Funding
Glasgow Knowledge Exchange Fund - the University has established a new KE / Impact
investment fund to ensure that appropriate pathways to impact are developed and that
organisations / individuals capable of influencing and creating impact from new knowledge
are properly supported to do so.
First Step Awards: First Step Awards are available through the Encompass team at the
University of Glasgow. In order to stimulate academic and industrial engagement, financial
support of up to £5,000 per project is available for small projects between the University and
Scottish SMEs.
Recognition and Reward
The Performance and Development Review (P&DR) process is used to recognise and reward
knowledge exchange and engagement activities within the CVR. Reviewers actively recognise
and praise participation in knowledge exchange and engagement activities and work to
identify further training needs in this area. Training is available through MRC-supported
activities and training programmes offered by the University.
The University of Glasgow
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