Smart science to improve lives™

Knowledge Transfer Partnership with York University

Croda International Plc, the name behind high performance ingredients and technologies that are relied on by industries and consumers everywhere, is pleased to announce a Knowledge Transfer Partnership The University of York’s Department of Mathematics. This new KTP will see the innovative speciality chemical manufacturer work with the university developing novel algorithms for product comparison and quality control.

The KTP is funded by UK Research and Innovation through the UK government’s innovation agency, Innovate UK and it is the first part-time KTP ever formed at York. Croda is a global organisation operating across 38 different countries, this partnership will work with their founding manufacturing site at Rawcliffe Bridge, England, which is one of their four manufacturing sites within the UK.

The partnership is backed by the expertise of two academics: Professor Julie Wilson who brings expertise in the application of mathematical modelling and statistical methods to biological and chemical problems; and Dr Marina Knight, a Senior Lecturer in Statistics, whose research interests are centred on the modelling of stochastic processes with time-evolving statistical characteristics which is of particular relevance to this partnership.

Commenting on the project’s objectives, Professor Julie Wilson said: “The ability to make the same product in a number of different locations globally provides maximum manufacturing flexibility, but the product must remain constant wherever it is made. This project will involve the development of methods to objectively and quantitatively compare the similarity of speciality chemical ingredients manufactured in different locations, assessed through detailed compositional analysis. Adding data analysis like this to Croda’s already high quality control standards will enable them to continue to demonstrate the consistent composition of their products across their manufacturing sites.

Dr Elizabeth Dickinson has been appointed as a KTP Associate and she will be playing a key role in creating innovative data analysis techniques as well as working to embed the skills and knowledge of these techniques at Croda. Dr Dickinson brings expertise in statistical modelling and pattern recognition of data from analytical chemistry (chemometrics) and said: “I'm really excited to be working on this fantastic opportunity with the Department of Mathematics and Croda. The fact that the position is part-time means that I am able to balance work and family commitments, and carry out really interesting research at the same time. It's excellent for my professional development working in both industry and academia, so I feel very lucky to be working on such a great project!”

Dr Damian Kelly, Head of Global Research & Development at Croda Said: “We are delighted to be further collaborating with York University on this project and building on our already existing strong relationship. This is an important business opportunity for us and it would not be possible without the academic expertise at York. Product quality and supply is a key strength for Croda and we will look to adopt all available innovation tools to ensure we maintain our leadership position and continue to deliver excellent service to our customers”