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Innovation Through Collaboration - programme evaluation (final report)


Innovation Through Collaboration (ItC) was launched in November 2007, managed on behalf of the Chemical Sciences Scotland (CSS) Innovation Group, as a way to encourage the development of collaborative projects between organisations in the Chemical Sciences sector in Scotland. The evaluation assesses the success of the programme and offers guidance on key success factors, areas for development and design of the programme going forward.


Information was collected through a programme of primary research including consultation with the programme delivery agents, Business Therapies, the Chemistry Innovation KTN, companies that have been involved in ItC initiatives, companies that have had no involvement with the programme, academics undertaking research in the area of chemical sciences and Interface. A number of account managers and innovation specialists throughout SE were also consulted.


The ItC programme has made considerable progress given that has been running for only 18 months. The study indicated that ItC has started to generate momentum with companies being more pro-active in their interactions with other companies and with academia. If the programme does not continue in the future, in one form or another, then this momentum would be lost and it is likely that things would revert to how they were in the past, with limited business to business interaction in particular. Companies, academics, the programme delivery agents and Scottish Enterprise (SE) account managers and innovation practitioners suggest that an industry specific programme like ItC is highly beneficial. However, there was a relatively low level of awareness of ItC as a stand alone programme and some confusion regarding what events and initiatives were part of the programme and not part of wider CSS, IChemE or other events. This suggests that the visibility of the ITC “brand” is low and is becoming lost amongst all of the other information that companies receive on a daily basis.


The following recommendations were made: any future ItC programme should be clearly aligned with CSS to avoid confusion; a clear brand, logo or typeface should be created to make the programme easily identifiable and recognisable; the programme marketing and communication should be improved; future events should focus on networking with events held at least every 6 months; examples of collaboration and innovation best practice should be generated; SE account and innovation managers should be engaged to ensure that companies have the support they need to take any collaborative projects forward; and programme data management and record keeping needs to be more robust.

Author Optimat Ltd
Published Year 2009
Report Type Evaluation
  • Sectors
    Chemical sciences
  • Innovation
    Business innovation