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Knowledge Exchange Awards 2022

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Welcome the Knowledge Exchange Awards 2022

This October, the Knowledge Exchange Awards will celebrate the best collaborations between University of Exeter researchers and external partners regionally, nationally, and globally.

The awards will see three shortlisted projects in each of seven categories, as judged by a panel of senior University staff and external reviewers. All shortlisted nominees will be invited to the award ceremony on Thursday 20 October at the Great Hall, Streatham Campus.

About the awards  |  Categories and nominated projects  |  Speakers  |  Judges  |  Sponsors  

About the Knowledge Exchange Awards

Knowledge Exchange is the two-way exchange between researchers and research users of ideas, evidence, experiences and skills. These activities make it more likely that research and expertise will make a difference to the ways in which questions, events or problems are addressed around the world.

Each year, the University of Exeter works with partners on more than 2,000 projects across key sectors. With the Knowledge Exchange Awards, we want to champion this work, by celebrating the many ways our researchers and Professional Services teams are taking research into the wider world.

The awards will be led by our Innovation, Impact and Business (IIB) team. The team works across research and education to build links between our research and external partners, locally, nationally and globally, so that our research has meaningful, life-changing impact around the world.

Visit our website to find out how the University of Exeter can help your business.

Categories, winners and shortlisted projects

Recognising excellence in sustainability, environment and life sciences. Potential innovations can include products, policies, services and community partnerships.


Nominated by Prof Richard Brazier. Partnered with Devon Wildlife Trust. 


Nominated by Dr Rosalind Shaw. Partnered with Cornwall Council.

Nominated by Prof Meiling Zhu. Partnered with Babcock International Group and Network Rail

Nominated by Prof Gino Hrkac. Partnered with Toyota Motor Corporation.

Recognising innovations that lead us to better mental and physical wellbeing. Potential innovations can include products, policies, services and community partnerships.


Nominated by Dr Leigh Jackson. Partnered with COVID-19 Genomics Consortium UK and UK Health Security Agency.


Nominated by Prof Willie Hamilton. Partnered with NHS organisations, NICE, Macmillian and CRUK.

Nominated by Dr Hayes Dalal. Partnered with NHS Lothian.

Recognising innovations towards a more equitable, just and inclusive society. Potential innovations can include products, policies, services and community partnerships.


Nominated by Prof John Heathershaw. Partnered with Global Integrity and Chatham House. 


Nominated by Dr Sarah Flanagan. Partnered with Congenital Hyperinsulinism International and The Genomics Laboratory.

Nominated by Dr Kubo Macak. Partnered with The Czech National Cyber and Information Security Agency, The International Committee of the Red Cross, NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence, U.S. Naval War College, Wuhan University.

Recognising a team that has delivered significant impact through licensing or venture development.


        Nominated by Prof Christopher Thornton. Partnered with ISCA Diagnostics Limited.


        Nominated by Dr Tessa Gordelier. Partnered with Reflex Marine Ltd. 

        Nominated by Prof Sam Vine. Partnered with Cineon Training.

Recognising excellent student projects and activities delivered in a real-world context. This category is open to current students and recent graduates (the activities must have been carried out whilst a student at the University).

Joint Winners:

        Nominated by Sarah Fairbairn. Partnered with LumiraDx.

        Nominated by Dr Roger Auster. Partnered with Devon Wildlife Trust.


        Nominated by Sophie Corrigan. Partnered with Biome Algae. 

        Nominated by Fidelia Law. Partnered with The Thinktank Science Museum, Centre of the Cell, Florence Nightingale Museum, Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Centre, EdVenture Children's Museum, and Riverbanks Zoo and Gardens. 

Recognising excellent research and knowledge exchange delivered in a real-world context. This category is open to staff with less than three years' experience at the university (the activities must have been carried out whilst employed at the University).


        Nominated by Dr Chico Camargo. Partnered with The Mozilla Foundation. 


        Nominated by Dr Tony Lidington. Partnered with Promenade Promotions Limited. 

        Nominated by Dr Cordelia Freeman. Partnered with Fondo MARIA.

Recognising excellence in Knowledge Exchange activities which encompass the practical application of new research and/or new ways of working to tackle real-world problems. This category is open to any teams who facilitate innovation and impact.


        Nominated by Prof Ian Bateman. Partnered with Devon Wildlife Trust.  


        Nominated by Prof Will Gaze. Partnered with AstraZeneca. 

        Nominated by Dr Stephen Michell. Partnered with Royal Devon University Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust. 

        Nominated by Prof Stewart Barr. Partnered with Somerset Wildlife Trust, Avon Wildlife Trust, Devon County Council, Ocean Conservation Trust, Field Studies Council, Eden Project, Wild Planet Trust, Magdalen Farm, On The Hill and Carymoor Environmental Trust.


Lisa Roberts, Host 

Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive Professor Lisa Roberts took up her post on 1 September 2020. Prior to this, Professor Roberts was Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Innovation at the University of Leeds, where she led on the development of the University’s research and innovation strategy. During this time she led significant increases in the income, quality and impact of research at Leeds. She also led a major step change in how the University worked with business, from start-ups to large corporates, launching a new innovation hub and leading a city-wide team of senior city stakeholders through the MIT Regional Entrepreneurship Acceleration Programme (REAP). Before joining Leeds, Lisa was Executive Dean of the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences at the University of Surrey, leading the Schools of Bioscience and Medicine, Psychology and Health Sciences.  During this time she also developed and launched only the 8th School of Veterinary Medicine in the UK and developed a successful One Health Strategy with external partnerships being key to its success.

Professor Roberts is a Professor of Virology, having studied for her PhD at the BBSRC Institute for Animal Health (now the Pirbright Institute) and the University of Kent. Earlier in her career, she worked as a Product Development Manager for Procter and Gamble in the UK and Belgium.

She is a Board member of the Russell Group, a Board member of Jisc, and will be taking up the role of Board member of Universities UK on 1 August 2022. Regionally, she is a Board member of both the Heart of the South West and the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnerships, Chair of the GW4 Council, and Member of the Liveable Exeter Place Board.  In May 2022, Lisa was appointed by the Minister of State for Further and Higher Education to chair a working group dedicated to tackling the issue of spiking attacks against students, bringing together vice-chancellors, police, campaigners and victims to produce plans for practical action to help keep students safe.

Luke Lang, Keynote 

Luke Lang is a founder, chairman, NED, advisor and mentor. He co-founded Crowdcube, a pioneer of equity crowdfunding, which has raised over £1 billion for high growth European businesses such as Monzo, Revolut, BrewDog, Pod Point and Mindful Chef.

He was named by Debrett’s as one of Britain’s 500 most influential people, EY Entrepreneur Of The Year for London and the South and was selected as one of The Sunday Times ‘Maserati 100’ game-changing entrepreneurs.

Luke is passionate about purpose-led businesses who are on a mission to make a difference and is Entrepreneur In Residence for SETsquared Exeter where he advises Devon-based businesses as part of the Accelerator programme.

Justin Leigh, Compere

Justin Leigh is a familiar face across the South West. For the last 20 years, he was one of the main presenters of the BBC’s most successful regional news programme, Spotlight. He was also a presenter on BBC Radios Devon and Cornwall, in a career spanning more than 30 years.

During that time he has interviewed thousands of people from all walks of life including Royalty, Prime Ministers and leading figures from local politics and business. Justin has broadcast live from some of the biggest events in the region, such as the Dawlish rail line collapse, the grounding of the Napoli container ship in East Devon, and the devastating flood which swept through the Cornish village of Boscastle. He has also reported from around the world including South Africa, the Arctic Circle, France and Belgium.

A highly skilled presenter, Justin has also hosted complex general election debates and special programmes on the effect of Brexit and the 2008 economic crash. Born and brought up in Cornwall, Justin is passionate about the region and the issues affecting everyone who lives here. Since stepping down from his BBC role in 2020, Justin is now teaching the next generation of journalists at Plymouth Marjon University. He is also a freelance broadcaster and media trainer and contributes a fortnightly column to the Cornish Times and Cornish & Devon Post Newspapers.


Click on each judge to read their bio.


Our Main Event Sponsor is Morgan Sindall Construction South West

Our main sponsor for the evening is Morgan Sindall Construction South West. Morgan Sindall Construction specialise in all elements of the built environment for sectors such as Healthcare, Education, MOD, residential and Commercial.

Morgan Sindall Construction has delivered more than £20 million of work for the University of Exeter in the past five years alone and is currently onsite at the campus carrying out improvement and refurbishment works to the existing Harrison building. They have also been recently appointed to build the new Centre for Resilience, Environment, Water and Waste.

 Our Award Sponsors