From funding to value
How does one create more value from marine research and development (R&D)? The project attempting to answer this question is a collaboration between IRIS-UiS Centre for Innovation Research in Stavanger, Sintef and Nofima. Last week the project kicked off at Nofima in Tromsø.
The project is headed by Professor Ragnar Tveterås. He also headed the Tveterås committee, which presented the much-discussed seafood industry report in 2014.
Significant funds are spent on marine R&D. Approximately NOK 3.5 billion is invested in marine R&D in Norway every year. Such an extensive use of resources means that the marine sector and society demand that marine R&D investments provide significant returns in the form of increased value creation. The question the three research communities are cooperating on answering is basically: How can value be maximised for business and society through research?
The Fishery and Aquaculture Industry Research Fund (FHF), which is responsible for approximately NOK 200 million annually in research funds, is funding the project that aims to enable the marine sector to better exploit research investments by employing research-based knowledge to a greater extent in businesses in their innovation processes.
“The project will present proposals for the design of R&D projects from ordering, via implementation, delivery and to the dissemination of knowledge. The project will also result in new knowledge on to which extent and in which ways public research and innovation funds trigger corresponding private funds, and what it takes to trigger such funds. The project will also propose measures that can enhance the businesses’ innovation capabilities by strengthening their knowledge base and networks,” says Ragnar Tveterås.
The project will last for two years – until the end of 2017. This week, in Tromsø, work started on developing specific plans for implementing research on research and innovation. The project will conduct systematic analyses of research and innovation processes and the players involved in these. It includes a critical study of the R&D institutions and universities that are to provide new research-based knowledge on the basis of the substantial funding they receive. However, the study will also include the businesses.
«Among other things, we will interview 40 businesses on their challenges related to R&D projects, and this autumn we will organize arenas where findings are presented to the businesses and discussed with them with an aim to identify measures that can result in better returns on the R&D funds,” Tveterås says.