The transfer of research results to society and the business world in the area of heritage and culture was a difficult idea to understand in the not too distant past. But the foundation of specific research centres dedicated to this field has meant that great strides have been taken in the development of this concept, and the knowledge acquired is already being returned to society and transferred to companies contracting research services.

Achieving knowledge transfer contracts in the areas of heritage and culture is one of the objectives of the Campus of International Excellence Southern Catalonia (CEICS). The Catalan Institute of Classical Archaeology (ICAC) already conducts leading research projects in the field of urban archaeology planimetry, land studies, implementation of ICTs in archaeology and training and the management of data banks.

Traditionally it has been public administrations that have most required the services of researchers in archaeology or prehistory and the majority of the CEICS contracts still come from them. But the trend is changing. Private companies have contracted the services of ICAC groups to excavate delimiting trial pits for specific works or to use the services of the graphic documentation and archaeometric studies units.

Technology transfer at the IPHES

The Institute of Human Palaeoecology and Social Evolution (IPHES), along with technology-based companies and technology centres, has contributed to developing applications for the research areas. IPHES has become a technology transfer agent, which has led it to register a patent with the Industrial Automation Institute-CSIC in Madrid and the Technology and Transfer Centre of the URV. The patent is for a sensor device that is used to measure the coordinates of objects, particularly those found during excavations. The centre also works with the industrial sector. For example, it collaborated with an IT multinational in the development of information systems in archaeology from the working platform of the Atapuerca excavations.

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