All entries for Monday 02 March 2009

March 02, 2009

Business and HE

Writing about web page http://www.insidermedia.com/productsandservices/spark/spark_issue_one/learning_to_compete/index.html

Interesting piece in a new magazine focusing on Business/HE interface – something that has been on my mind of late.

Whilst there is interesting stuff in there I find myself wondering if the first half matches up with the second half.

Part one seems fair enough and the use of MIT as a case study is fairly safe, as are the examples of other innovative spin outs from US institutions.

The think that doesn’t sit right is then the UK response to this challenge as outlined by the interview Prof. Arthur Francis. I am not convinced that the model outlined = Sergey Brin.

Surely the success of MIT is based on creating an environment of innovation and creativity rather than institutionalised support. I also question whether the MBA is the mechanism whereby UK institutions will find their business mojo. The strength of MIT and others is that they foster the spread of ideas from across a whole range of disciplines – they are intellectually rich and it is this interchange of ideas within institutions and without that makes them work and attractive to business.

Whilst the second part of the article may be entirely valid and effective, I am not sure it supports the argument that by following that path we can build something similar to the American model. That seems to require something different in my mind – something less concerned about applied/pure and more interested in ideas and academic creativity, and that is not exclusively a business school thing.


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