Innovation America Innovation America Accelerating the growth of the GLOBAL entrepreneurial innovation economy
Founded by Rich Bendis


The role of universities is changing. In the last century the primary focus of universities was on education and research, with the key goals of creating and diffusing information and knowledge. A third and equally important role is now emerging, with its accompanying expectations and responsibilities - that of value creation. 'Value' in this context refers to both business value and societal value. With tertiary sector funding coming under increasing scrutiny, governments and the public alike are demanding more accountability and proof of added value from universities. A 'university ecosystem' approach can unleash much of the potential energy in universities and transform it into kinetic energy, with graduates emerging not just in a state of readiness to be employees, but often as highly motivated entrepreneurs with business or social innovation initiatives in flight. An ecosystem can be defined in this context as a network of interdependent organizations or people in a specific environment with partly shared perspectives, resources, aspirations and directions. This new form of positioning equates to what Etzkowitz (2004) and Andersson et al (2010) have called the 'entrepreneurial university'.

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