Guidance for your Local Growth and Regeneration projects

Guidance for your Local Growth and Regeneration projects
Img Source: Kevin Dous/Unsplash 

To support your projects and ideas, this article is part of the '7 KEF Perspectives' support series. This week we will focus on the Local Growth and Regeneration perspective.

There are seven perspectives in the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) and Local Growth and Regeneration is one of them.

According to Research England (RE), Local Growth and Regeneration refers to:

Activity where higher education institutions, businesses, public sector and the wider civil society work together to achieve a strategic goal with a prime focus on local growth or regeneration in a self-defined local area. This may include local economic development, social inclusion, public space or infrastructure improvements and reconversion of brownfield areas.

Local Growth and Regeneration in action

The University of Leeds and SPARK
The University of Leeds is a great example of a higher education institution that has contributed to local growth through its SPARK programme, the University’s Business Start-up support service.

This programme offers advice, mentoring, enterprise scholarships, and workshops to students and graduates. Included in this is a series of workshops designed to an insight into what running a business will be like with practical tips and advice for those thinking about and commencing a new commercial venture.

The University of Hertfordshire and the UEZ

The University of Hertfordshire’s University Enterprise Zone (UEZ) supports businesses within the region by making their researchers, resources, and facilities accessible to enterprises enabling them to leverage the value of its infrastructure for the benefit of the local economy.

Amongst a range of things, the UEZ programme offers free ‘meet-the-expert’ consultancy from the university’s network of academics and external advisors; low-cost rental access to its prototyping, IoT and food laboratories along with technical support; market intelligence services to scope, research and evaluate early stage commercial and/or social enterprise concepts and more.

Ideas to support Local Growth and Regeneration

Seek collaborators within your department to assist with regeneration projects. Img Source: Spencer Davis/Unsplash

If you're feeling inspired to kickstart a regeneration project, we've put together some tips for researchers, staff and students!

• Community research: Organise regular meetings and roundtables with both the public and private sectors to come up with project ideas for the growth of the regional economy. Create surveys to gather insights into what impacts the local community, feedback on what people would like to be improved which public spaces need to be reworked, and so on.

• Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs): Expand the scope of Knowledge Transfer Partnerships at your university by placing highly skilled graduates (known as KTP Associates) within companies to work on specific local growth and regeneration projects.

• Community Revitalisation Grants: Establish a grant programme aimed at rejuvenating local communities through various initiatives such as infrastructure improvements, beautification projects, and small business support. This could include funding for community gardens, public art installations, or the renovation of historic buildings to stimulate economic activity and enhance quality of life.

• Research and development (R&D) collaboration: Work with the industry to create and strengthen clusters of commercial excellence. Examples include the Graphene Institute in Manchester.

• Develop innovation centres: Provide specialist facilities, support and funding to local SMEs embarking on R&D and innovation projects. Examples include the Marine Innovation Centre in Plymouth.

Graduate placements: Structured placements enable graduates to embark on a defined project for an SME, benefitting from training and mentoring while offering their specialised skills and knowledge.

• Help SMEs to innovate through research, collaboration and networking: This includes offering solutions to real business issues, such as access to skilled staff talent, access to an ecosystem of innovators, inventors and scientists, and access to equipment and infrastructure.

If you want to learn more about Local Growth and Regeneration and the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) visit the UKRI website or read this NCUB article.

You can also find out how KEVRI are optimising Local Growth and Regeneration projects by reaching out at



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