Diversity wins the day with business-academic projects

Date posted

23 February 2018


Professor Bill Buchanan from the university’s School of Computing has been honoured for his Outstanding Contribution to Knowledge Exchange.

KTP Associate Petra Crocker was also a winner as the university’s efforts were recognised at the Scottish Knowledge Exchange Awards 2018.

Professor Buchanan leads knowledge exchange through collaborative projects and industry-led events and engagements which have contributed greatly to growing a thriving Scottish cyber security community.

This has led to improvements in business resilience and incident response, and to innovations and real patient impact in health and social care. 

He received an OBE in 2017 for Services to Cyber Security, has co-created three successful spin-out companies, established an innovative Cloud training infrastructure in security and digital forensics, and is driving the building of a cyber security training centre, accessible online and on campus.

Petra picked up the award for Building Skills Through Knowledge Exchange. She worked with Multiply UK Ltd in Edinburgh to create a real-time digital consumer tool to drive both the expansion and reputation of the company as industry experts in planning and insight. 

Also among the winners were a unique technology for the construction industry offering immersive “walk throughs” of unbuilt houses; a novel method of recycling print toner powder for use across a range of applications including art, construction and animal medicines; and a technique for new drug discovery.


The annual awards, run by Interface, celebrate the impacts achieved through business-academic partnerships. This year’s event was attended by 300 people at Royal Bank of Scotland Conference Centre in Edinburgh. 

Paul Wheelhouse, Scottish Government Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy, said: “The awards are a showcase for some of the best examples we have in Scotland of what can be achieved when business and academia work together towards a common goal.

“Scotland has a growing reputation as a place where excellence is achieved through innovation. The ongoing exchange of knowledge is a crucial element of that.”

Dr Siobhán Jordan, Director of Interface, said: “The sheer diversity of business-academic partnerships in this year’s awards is impressive and testament to innovation thriving in the business-academic community. 

“The winners have great potential to impact on society, the environment and the economy, whilst many of the partnerships demonstrate a variety of unexpected collaborations, for example, matching a joinery company with virtual reality experts.”