The beams department, like many CERN departments, is a rich source of good ideas. In order to design, construct, maintain and upgrade the CERN accelerators and technical systems, innovative solutions in physics, engineering and software are constantly being developed. The vast majority of these are tailored to our specific needs, however, this does not preclude them being of use in the outside world. The range is large, from simple ideas, through novel solutions, to truly innovative applications.
For the engineers and physicists “on-the ground”, making the step from idea to knowledge-transfer opportunity is not always so obvious – many might think that their idea is not interesting enough, or innovative enough, or just not see the possibilities for its application in the outside world.
Hence, the idea of a departmental KT (Knowledge Transfer) Innovation day was born. The purpose was two-fold: to provide a forum to discuss potential KT ideas, and to “de-mystify” KT and IP (Intellectual Property) management processes by having a strong interaction between the participants and the CERN KT group. The format was extended to present ongoing and past KT projects in the department. These were used as examples of different KT solutions and helped to promote the idea that KT is possible, practical and desirable.
In the end the BE-KT Innovation Day exceeded all my expectations with a lively discussion between the participants throughout the sessions and a host of new ideas coming out – many of which show real promise. There was general consensus amongst the participants that this kind of forum is a good way to promote and foster KT in the department. For BE, this will now become an annual event!