An investigation of the translational asset: a proposed classification

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Translational Assets (TAs) are considered one of the actors that play a critical role within the national innovation system (NIS) of every country that embraces university, government and industry collaboration. Moreover, these organisations have been established to support industries, companies, and particularly SMEs, filling the university-industry gap. Although the establishment of translational assets creates many benefits, this organisational ecosystem has been a controversial topic. It is hampered by a lack of consensus on how to define and classify translational assets. The problem arises because of their heterogeneity. This study identifies the critical factors for presenting a general classification from the analysis of academic papers and technical reports. The proposed classification is built, showing the factors of organisational structure, resources and motivation for collaboration on a bidirectional continuum. Therefore, this paper's findings provide a proposed classification of three main types of TAs, which are as follows: exploratory, plug and developer/solver. This is a heuristic classification that provides enrichment to the literature and a better understanding for practitioners of these organisations' behaviour.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3123-3149
Number of pages27
JournalThe Journal of the Knowledge Economy
Issue number4
Early online date5 Nov 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 5 Nov 2021


  • translational asset
  • theoretical typology
  • classification
  • applied research


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