Knowledge Transfer Partnerships allow academics to apply their research in industry.

HR Wallingford ahead in flood risk optimisation

Academics from the University of Exeter were able to help one organisation lead the way with the latest flood risk management tools.

The work meant HR Wallingford was well placed to meet the need for skills and knowledge related to climate change adaptation brought about as this adaptation becomes a major focus and investment area for governments globally.

Despite being a leader in the development of flood risk management tools HR Wallingford had limited experience in applying the latest developments in optimisation from the hydro-informatics field.

The company teamed up with the University of Exeter to establish a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) to build on their existing knowledge and expertise, and expand the functionality of its computational modelling.

The project provided the company with expertise in optimisation methods and also expanded its knowledge in relation to handling climate change adaptation.

The decision support tool (DST) developed was tested in the Thames Estuary. The solution represented a step change in the functionality of previous tools and computational modelling.

The company now has a competitive edge in consultancy work, and the new technology has helped them win new contracts and support public and private hydraulic projects across the world.

The KTP brought state-of-the-art optimisation techniques, developed by the University of Exeter, into HR Wallingford’s flood risk modelling framework to produce an improved DST for flood risk management.

What is a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP)

KTP is a partially funded government programme designed to help organisations improve competitiveness by accessing and applying expertise from UK Universities.

The partnership brings together an academic team, a company partner and a high calibre graduate to collaborate on a project that benefits the company and gives academics the opportunity to apply their research.

“The Knowledge Transfer Partnership with HR Wallingford was a valuable experience as it enabled me to gain additional insight into the complex issues surrounding the flood risk management in the Thames Estuary but also provided me with the opportunity to contribute to solving a real world problem using my own knowledge and expertise.”

Professor Zoran Kapelan, College of Engineering Maths and Physical Sciences