Today’s economy is increasingly driven by intangible values such as knowledge, inventiveness and creativity. Research and innovation benefit from scientists, research organisations, enterprises and citizens accessing, sharing and using scientific knowledge. Thus it is important to promote knowledge transfer between these players. In European research institutions there are hindering factors such as legal barriers, cultural differences between the science communities and enterprises, lack of incentives, as well as fragmented markets for knowledge and technology. It is particularly important to link knowledge transfer between public research institutions and the private sector, while respecting intellectual property rights. The hindering factors must be removed in order to improve knowledge transfer, open access to, and optimal circulation of, European research results.