Regional Innovation Impact of Universities


Regional Innovation Impact of Universities

9781839100529 Edward Elgar Publishing
Robert Tijssen, Professor Emeritus of Science and Innovation Studies, Leiden University, the Netherlands and Professor, Stellenbosch University, South Africa, John Edwards, Senior Researcher, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal and Vice-President of the Policy Experimentation and Evaluation Platform and Koen Jonkers, Editor-in-Chief, European Commission, DG Joint Research Centre, Brussels, Belgium
Publication Date: 2021 ISBN: 978 1 83910 052 9 Extent: 240 pp
This is an open access title available under the terms of a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 License. It is free to read, download and share on

Driven by European Union policy challenges, this cutting-edge book focuses upon the Regional Innovation Impact (RII) of universities, to analyse the socioeconomic impact that universities in Europe have on their hometowns, metropolitan areas and regions.

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Driven by European Union policy challenges, this cutting-edge book focuses upon the Regional Innovation Impact (RII) of universities, to analyse the socioeconomic impact that universities in Europe have on their hometowns, metropolitan areas and regions.

By developing a conceptual model of RII, and by applying a mixed-method ''narrative with numbers'' analytical framework, the case studies presented in this book describe the RII potential and performance of twenty research-active universities throughout Europe. The findings and lessons learned are framed within the context of RII-related policy challenges within the European Commission, and possible EC funding instruments for incentivising RII within universities. Key features include an analysis of EU policy instruments and assessment frameworks for regional leadership, human capital development and knowledge transfer.

Insightful and original, the lessons provided within this book will be beneficial to European, national and regional policy makers interested in approaches to incentivise universities to contribute more to regional innovation systems. It will also be of interest to university leaders and administrators who wish to develop strategies to orient their organisations towards increasing their RII.
Critical Acclaim
‘The approach proposed in this book offers the opportunity to grasp empirical elements to sustain innovation in regional economies. It provides a solid basis for the implementation of a system of evaluation (or self-evaluation) and monitoring of the university RII.’
– Dave Mobhe Bokoko, Journal of Innovation Economics and Management

‘Universities are key innovation actors, progressively acquiring new roles and engaging with their surrounding environments in ways that are increasingly complex. As it becomes more important to understand these roles, it becomes also more difficult to monitor them. This book develops a powerful method to assess the regional impact of universities and illustrates its application. It will become a necessary reference for all scholars and practitioners seeking to understand the multifaceted contributions that universities make to society.’
– Jordi Molas-Gallart, INGENIO (CSIC-UPV), Spain

‘It is beyond doubt nowadays that universities have a critical societal role beyond education and scientific research in the direct application of scientific results to promote technological advancement and underwrite the development and growth of regions and countries. This book unpacks a complicated package through a robust conceptual framework and evidence based on both in-depth self-case studies and external primary data to investigate the regional innovation impact of a set of Institutions of Higher Education across Europe. The RII framework emphasises the inter-connections of universities with their environments and the correspondence of scientific excellence with regional economic specialisation. The book presents a very promising start in a field of critical importance not only for Europe but also for large numbers of emerging economies around the world engaging in the process of technology upgrading and catching-up.’
– Nicholas S. Vonortas, The George Washington University, US

‘The role played by universities in their cities and region has become a driving force of government policy and institutional strategy. However, too often this is narrowly focused. This book celebrates their wider impact and benefits for economic sustainability as well as the creation and dissemination of knowledge and skills, civic engagement and social innovation. The case studies help us understand the breadth of this dynamic while the RII Performance Management Framework lays the very helpful and timely groundwork for strategic assessment and decision-making.’
– Ellen Hazelkorn, Professor Emerita, Technological University Dublin, Ireland, and Joint Managing Partner, BH Associates

Contents: Foreword Preface PART I REGIONAL INNOVATION IMPACT: AN INTRODUCTION 1. Universities in Europe and local engagement 2. RII analytical framework 3. The bigger picture PART II RII CASE STUDIES 4. Case studies of universities in Europe 5. Regional orientation, strategic development and knowledge infrastructure 6. Education and human resources development 7. Research, knowledge creation and technology transfer 8. Support to enterprise development and entrepreneurship education PART III TOWARDS IMPLEMENTATION 9. Realities and complexities of RII analytics and assessment 10. Policy development and strategic implications 11. Final reflections PART IV APPENDICES: UNIVERSITY SELF-APPRAISAL REPORTS Index
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