A critical review of the feasibility of the concept of the knowledge triangle (KT) as a basis for policy is presented. The research shows a gap between policy discourses and academic research. KT appears as a policy driven concept with superficial plausibility, however, has not been much analysed and evaluated. As a concept for policy making the KT seems complex and poorly understood. Few concrete approaches of the KT were observable (the European Institute of Innovation & Technology EIT and the more conceptual European Association of Institutions in Higher Education EURASHE concept). The analysis provides an analytical framework and proceeds by looking at the three two-way-relationships included, and then tries to draw extrapolations towards the three-way relationship indicated by the KT. A focus is the ‘Third Mission’ of universities, that has various, and partly contradictory meanings. A basic challenge is that the concept requires a turn from the ongoing differentiation process in higher education towards (re)-integration.