Knowledge Transfer: Comparing Strengths, Tracking Trends


A recent study by UNU-MERIT on the knowledge transfer activities of public research organisations (PROs) has been used in the Norwegian Research Barometer 2015.

The study included a survey conducted during the fall of 2014, on the knowledge transfer activities of public research organisations (PROs) in 2012 and 2013. In total, 128 knowledge transfer offices (KTOs) were surveyed. With 97 replies, to both the ASTP-Proton and the UNU-MERIT survey, the response rate was 75.8%.

The main objective of this study is to compare the activities of commercialising public funded research in Norway to five “barometer” countries which include, Austria, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands and Sweden.

Standardised performance measures for 2013 per 1,000 research personnel have shown that Danish PROs outperform other PROs in the barometer countries on patent applications, license agreements and license income. Swedish PROs perform best in terms of patent grants and start-ups, and Finnish PROs lead in terms of invention disclosures.

The report provides some of the highlights of the survey, additional data including results for the years 2010 and 2011 can be found in the Excel file. The survey results have also been used in a working paper that analyses the impact of regional environment on the knowledge transfer outcomes of PROs.