Congratulations to CIMR PhD student Maryam Ghorbankhani

Many congratulations to CIMR PhD student Maryam Ghorbankhani, who passed her PhD viva with minor corrections on July 12, 2023.

In her doctoral thesis, titled “Exploitation of public sector R&D and the open innovation paradigm: Governance of knowledge transfer within public research organisations (PROs)”, Maryam investigates what organisational approaches and managerial practices PROs use in order to transfer their knowledge and R&D outcomes. The thesis is in the three-paper format, building on quantitative and qualitative evidence about PROs in the UK that are primarily engaged in research activities.

The first paper analyses how PROs organise their Knowledge Transfer (KT) activities, and particularly what factors are associated with different ways to organise their KT management functions. The findings confirm that higher degrees of intrinsic and strategic complementarity between research and knowledge transfer management are associated with greater likelihood to vertically integrate KT management than to outsource it. This paper has been published in The Journal of Technology Transfer.*

The second paper investigates what managerial practices are associated with PROs’ KT activities within the open innovation paradigm. Building on 26 in-depth interviews, it identifies three outbound OI strategies used by PROs: i) open dissemination of scientific knowledge, ii) commercial strategy based on service provision and collaboration iii) commercial strategy based on licensing of IP. It is shown that different outbound OI strategies are aligned with different business models.

The third paper examines how well PROs’ performance measurements reflect the specificities of their heterogeneous missions and KT engagement. The findings, building on a combination of qualitative and quantitative evidence, show that PROs’ KT activities extend beyond those captured by the standard indicators and PROs with different missions tend to specialise in different KT activities.

The CIMR team congratulates Maryam for her achievement! We also thank the examiners Dr Marianna Marra and Dr Nicola Searle.

*Ghorbankhani, M. and Rossi, F. (2022) “Intrinsic and strategic complementarity of research and knowledge transfer activities as determinants of knowledge transfer management: evidence from public research organisations” The Journal of Technology Transfer, ISSN 0892-9912.