Collaboration Progress Monitor 2017

Collaboration Progress Monitor 2017

NCUB Collab Progress Monitor UK 2015 Image Dec15-Cropped2

The National Centre tracks progress in UK university business collaboration using a bespoke tool. It identifies emerging trends through:

  • Publicly available data released annually¹,
  • 15 metrics across four dimensions: resources for collaboration, knowledge flows between universities and business, partnerships and commercialisation activity, 
  • Comparison with the five year average, 
  • Detecting trends for early warnings of changing indicators.

 - Data sources for indicators

Collaboration Progress Monitor 2017




Pre-2017 tables:













The Monitor enables users to visualize the trajectory of different elements of collaboration at the same time, exposing trade-offs across elements such as quantity and quality, or number and size of deals. The Monitor is updated yearly after release of the underlying statistics.

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The Monitor enables users to track metrics as diverse as income and graduate employment, in a single-page view of university-business collaboration, highlighting the relationship between attributes such as quantity, quality, the number or the size of deals.

• For each indicator, the monitor identifies the current position of that metric in comparison with its own 5/4-year average. A metric is growing if the latest year is higher than average, and falling if the latest value is lower than the average on the chart.

• As some elements appear to perform above their average and others below, it is also clear that no single composite indicator can highlight definitive progress in the diversity of collaboration.

• Clockwise from the top, following the Year 2014 line in the UK monitor: businesses-funded university R&D is growing, foreign funds in universities are growing, graduate employment in innovation-active sectors is falling, share of postgraduates in work is rising.

• Over the two-year period shown, the Monitor provides an early warning for what is happening with university-business collaboration. The average itself is different for each year, but the distance from its own average shows whether a trend is continuing or changing.

For example, if a metric is closer to its own average over the last year, then it is growing slower than in previous years, or decelerating and vice-versa. If the last year value is further away from its own average, this indicator is growing faster than in previous years, or accelerating.

• Along the Year 2015 line, partnerships between SMEs and universities are decelerating (getting closer to the 5-year average), whereas income from licensing is growing at a faster rate, ie moving further away from its average.


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Resource  Industry income for Knowledge Exchange (KE) exc licencing 39.0% 40.3% 39.1% 39.7% Percent
Resource  Business funds in HE Lagged release 4.1%  4.1%  Percent 
Resource Business funds in HE  Lagged release   13.1%  15.3%  Percent 
Knowledge flows Academic-Corporate publications  Lagged release   0.010  0.008  Percent 
Knowledge flows  Academic-Corporate Field Weighted Citation Impact ** Lagged release   2.54  2.76  Weighted Avrg 
Knowledge flows Graduate employment in innovative sectors  42.5%  40.3%  42.8%  40.3%  Percent 
Partnerships  HEI deals with SMEs  62,502 81,706  52,043  67,103  Count 
Partnerships  HEI deals with SMEs   0.0024 0.0021  0.0028  0.0023  £Mill per deal 
Partnerships  HEI deals with large business   24,962 24,470  25,312  24,575  Count 
Partnerships  HEI deals with large business  0.0204 0.0235  0.0192  0.0221  £Mill per deal 
Partnerships  InnovateUK academic grants  461 637  376  563  Count 
Partnerships  InnovateUK academic grants 0.226  0.192  0.245  0.155  £mill per grant 
Commercialisation  Licenses granted  3,427  4,134  3,051  4,069  Count 
Commercialisation  Income from licencing    59,326 73,252  54,302  65,615  £000s 
Commercialisation  Patents granted   868  976  804  955  Count 
Commercialisation  Spin-offs active after three years    982 970  985 975  Count 

*5 year average   
** An indicator of research quality

















NCUB is carrying out further work to broaden and improve measurements of UBC. We welcome your feedback about the Collaboration Monitor and suggestions for new briefings and indicators. Get in touch with us at 



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