Innovation in higher education: the university paradox
AuthorGOEDEGEBUURE, LEO; van Vught, Frans
Source TitleAsia-Europe Colloquy on Universities of Tomorrow 2005
PublisherAsia-Europe Foundation (ASEF)
University of Melbourne Author/sGoedegebuure, Leo
AffiliationMelbourne Graduate School of Education, LH Martin Institute
Document TypeConference Paper
CitationsGoedegebuure, L., & van Vught, F. (2006). Innovation in higher education: the university paradox. In R. Molina (Ed.), Asia-Europe Colloquy on Universities of Tomorrow 2005, Luxembourg.
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Innovation is one of the major buzzwords in economic as well as higher education policy debates world-wide. In Europe, the Lisbon Agenda is the embodiment of this, with the clearly stated – though very difficult to attain – objective of Europe being the most dynamic and innovative economic block by 2010. In Australia the notion of transforming the economy from a primary industry-base to a knowledge-based economy is paramount in the governments policy, resulting in catchphrases such as the Clever Country. And in Asia, economies are rapidly transforming with the Chinese economy being one, though certainly not the only, example of major change and expansion. Within this framework, much emphasis is placed on the role of higher education and in particular of universities in supporting and sometimes even leading the quest for innovation. In this chapter we address this drive for innovation and the question of innovative universities by not only tackling the question why the theme of innovation has come so much to the fore and what places universities in so central a role in this. We also focus on the question what prevents universities to fully exploit their potential in stimulating innovation in our societies and economies. We do this by focussing first on the changing environmental conditions that universities face, including a particular stakeholder approach. Secondly, we explore the nature of the beast of little more through an analysis of the basic characteristics of universities. On the basis of this in the final part of this chapter we formulate some suggestions for effective reactions by universities for optimising their position in what we today so easily term the knowledge society.
Keywordshigher education; universities; innovation; stakeholders
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