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Grant Reilly


11th March 2021


Finalists revealed in 6th Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards

The Digital Health & Care Innovation are delighted to announce that SCOTCAP and our collaborative partners - Scottish Government, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, NHS National Services Scotland, NHS Highland, NHS Grampian, NHS Western Isles, Medtronic, Corporate Health International, University of Aberdeen and University of Strathclyde have been shortlisted for the multiparty collaboration award.

Interface, the business-academic matching service, is delighted to announce the shortlist for the 6th Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards.

With a record-breaking number of entries, the awards are firmly established as the premiere celebration of knowledge exchange between businesses and academics in Scotland, showcasing the incredible achievements of collaborative partnerships and individuals alike.

Ivan McKee, Minister for Trade, Innovation and Public Finance, said:

“The Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards, organised by Interface, act as an excellent tribute to the outstanding achievements of all those working across industry and academia.

“This event also highlights the crucial role that innovation can play, especially in these challenging times for business, in building sustainable economic growth and increasing productivity

“I’d like to congratulate all the nominees who have rightly been recognised for their tremendous work throughout the year.”

The shortlist is:

COVID-19 Collaborative Response

  • Aqualution Systems Ltd, Duns, and University of Edinburgh for the implementation of an automated manufacturing solution, rapidly increasing production of an effective disinfectant to fulfil demand in response to the COVID19 emergency.
  • The Lighthouse Laboratory in Glasgow, a major new COVID-19 testing facility by BioClavis Ltd, University of Dundee and University of Glasgow where processing COVID-19 testing samples from across the UK, recently reached the 10million test milestone.
  • NHS Scotland/NHS Lothian, Moredun Research Institute and SRUC for setting up a testing node to detect SARS-COV-2 using a RT-PCR based test to help expand the national NHS testing capacity.

Innovation of the Year - sponsored by Marks & Clerk

  • Phoenix Instinct Ltd, Forres, and University of the West of Scotland for the development of the world’s first-ever SMART, ultra-light weight, manual wheelchair.
  • Scotmas Group Ltd, Kelso, and Robert Gordon University for the development of a new and innovative method of producing disinfectants without harmful by-products for use in hospitals, water supplies and food production applications.
  • Scottish Trust for Underwater Archaeology (The Scottish Crannog Centre), Loch Tay, and the University of the West of Scotland for revitalising the Centre by designing an innovative immersive visitor experience integrated with the physical space and exhibitions.

Making a Difference

  • Denis Law Legacy Trust, Aberdeen, and Robert Gordon University for developing and growing a Streetsport programme, aimed at reducing anti-social behaviour, into a multi-levelled programme supporting over 18,500 disadvantaged young people to attain positive destinations.
  • NHS Highland, through Caithness General Hospital, and University of the Highlands and Islands, with a cross-sector partnership, for reducing the environmental impact of healthcare practices, promoting responsible water use and management.
  • Scottish Leather Group (SLG Technology), Bridge of Weir, and Edinburgh Napier University for the development of new, high value products and processes using sustainable materials, which have significantly impacted on manufacturers, as well as contributing to education, and art.

Powerful Partnership

  • Cobb Vantress, a global poultry genetics business, and University of Edinburgh have worked together since 2013 focusing on ensuring a sustainable global poultry industry across animal welfare, disease resistance, food security and preserving biodiversity.
  • Sublime Digital, Glasgow, and University of Glasgow, have partnered since 2018 for the creation of a virtual reality learning platform ‘Edify’ that allows students to access the benefits of virtual reality teaching from home without the need for high specification VR hardware.
  • Thales UK and University of the West of Scotland have collaborated since 2015 to develop ground-breaking AI technology, which could save lives by identifying missing people and providing warnings about buildings at risk of collapse.

Multiparty Collaboration

  • Aquaculture Genetics Alliance - the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute, University of Stirling, Hendrix Genetics, and the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science worked together to find key genetic markers for disease resistance, to identify and breed salmon with resistance to viral disease, and to tackle other diseases of salmon and aquaculture species.
  • The Scotland 5G Centre - University of Glasgow, University of Strathclyde and Scottish Futures Trust has brought together industry, the research community and Government to design, drive development and deployment of the infrastructure required to support Scotland’s role as a global leader in communications innovation.
  • The Scottish Capsule Programme (SCOTCAP) – Digital Health & Care Innovation Centre, Scottish Government, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, NHS National Services Scotland, NHS Highland, NHS Grampian, NHS Western Isles, Medtronic, Corporate Health International, University of Aberdeen and University of Strathclyde. The collaboration was tasked to co-design, deliver and evaluate the use of a “Pillcam” containing a digital camera as a viable, safe, and cost-effective alternative to colonoscopy and develop an innovation to adoption roadmap for NHS Scotland.

Knowledge Exchange Champion

  • Professor Sir Michael Ferguson CBE, FRS, FRSE, FMedSci, FRSB, University of Dundee, was appointed the first Regius Professor of Life Sciences in 2013. Mike received a knighthood for his services to science; was instrumental in establishing the Drug Discovery Unit (DDU) at the University of Dundee in 2006; and is co-Director of DDU and the Dundee Proteomics Facility.
  • Professor Malcolm Macdonald, University of Strathclyde, is instrumental in the development of Scotland’s space sector and its successes. His work as Director of the Scottish Centre of Excellence in Satellite Applications from 2014-2020 supported the creation of at least 16 new companies, and his media work has promoted Scotland on the global stage. Prof. MacDonald is leading a Space Technology Cluster as part of the Glasgow City Innovation District.
  • Professor Lis Neubeck, Head of Cardiovascular Health in the School of Health and Social Care at Edinburgh Napier University. The internationally leading research undertaken by Professor Neubeck on early detection and appropriate management of atrial fibrillation, has had significant impact on the field of cardiovascular health at a national, European and global level.

Knowledge Exchange Heroes

  • Lisa Farrell, Business Development Officer, University of Stirling. Lisa has taken a holistic approach to increasing knowledge exchange, engaging tirelessly with internal teams and external organisations to ensure mutual learning between industry and academia, and to foster continuous dialogue. This approach has resulted in new and strengthened relationships and an understanding of the opportunities of collaboration.
  • Gary Hogan, Knowledge Exchange Manager, Robert Gordon University. As part of the Business and Economic Development Department, Gary has played a pivotal role in significantly increasing knowledge exchange activity and supporting businesses to prosper through successful mechanisms such as the Scottish Funding Council Innovation Voucher programme. During the pandemic alone, Gary has fostered 50 new KE collaborations between the University and industry.
  • Dr Andrea Taylor, Head of Business Development, College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, the University of Edinburgh. Andrea is passionate about Knowledge Exchange and a relentless champion of her knowledge exchange team. Her drive and ambition has led a proactive industry engagement strategy delivering significant investment and nurturing new company formation.

Innovator of the Future

  • Dr Abdo Alnabulsi , Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) Associate, from the University of Aberdeen, who collaborated with Vertebrate Antibodies Ltd, Aberdeen, for his work to identify and characterise novel cancer biomarkers leading to a greater understanding of tumour progression and commercially valuable bio-tools.
  • Dr Jakub Rycerz, KTP Associate, from the University of the West of Scotland, who collaborated with Phoenix Instinct Ltd, Forres, on the design and manufacturing of a SMART, light-weight carbon fibre wheelchair frame integrating electronic systems.
  • Dr Fraser Stewart, KTP Associate, from the University of Strathclyde, who collaborated with Fathom Systems Ltd, Portlethen, on developing and integrating wearable health technology for deep sea divers into hyperbaric lifeboat monitoring systems, and a new ventilator system.

All the winners will be announced online at the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards Ceremony on 21st April 2021. 

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