Steph Morris

Associate Consultant

Steph is a specialist in knowledge exchange, innovation and regional economic development. Through her work with senior leaders and delivery teams within HE, Steph has developed and implemented strategies for enhanced knowledge exchange and innovation. She has a thorough understanding of the opportunities and challenges that universities face as anchor institutions driving regional economic development.

Steph joined SUMS as an associate in 2023 after 15 years in leadership roles within HE and innovation funding organisations. Her most recent role was as Director of Knowledge Exchange & Impact at the University of Leeds, where she was responsible for oversight of the Knowledge Exchange Framework and Knowledge Exchange Concordat. Steph led the University’s Innovation Development team through a period of significant growth in its portfolio of KTPs and innovation projects.

Under Steph’s leadership, the University adopted a knowledge exchange strategy that enabled more effective collaborations with partners and maximised positive impacts from research. Before working in HE, Steph spent 10 years at Innovate UK in roles including Head of Markets & Insights, and Regional Manager for Yorkshire & the North East. She built and led a team providing analysis and insight to support Innovate UK’s Executive team in deciding how to invest multi-million pound innovation budgets.

Steph worked with partners across central and regional government and the HE sector to increase engagement in innovation in the North of England. She has an in-depth understanding of the knowledge exchange and innovation funding landscape in the UK. Steph enjoys finding creative solutions to complex problems and working in collaboration to help people achieve their ambitions for knowledge exchange and innovation.