The University Challenge in the Collaboration Relationship With the Industry

The University Challenge in the Collaboration Relationship With the Industry

Marcello Chedid (University of Aveiro, Portugal) and Leonor Teixeira (IEETA / DEGEIT, University of Aveiro, Portugal)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-3476-2.ch027
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Abstract

Universities suffer from the impact of (1) life cycles associated with technological innovations, (2) the globalization of the economy and culture, (3) the educational needs of an increasingly knowledge-driven society, and (4) the training needs for high-performing professional activities. Solutions to these factors may be found in a positive attitude toward knowledge sharing and collaboration relationships. Collaboration has been considered a way to address the challenges of the 21st century, fostering the necessary innovation, growth, and productivity for all parties involved. Several studies reveal that collaboration can be strongly influenced by knowledge sharing. Collaboration relationships, besides the creation of new knowledge, may result in several outcomes and benefits for the university and society. This chapter aims to address and discuss the university challenges in the collaboration relationships with the industry based on the main results of some empirical studies developed during a research project.
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Introduction

The diversity environment that characterizes the universities propitiates the development of sub-cultures, transforming their communities in complex social organizations composed by diverse cultures, and predominating the academic freedom and autonomy (Sporn, 1996), where close control can induce negative reactions (Starbuck, 1992). Besides this scenario, universities nowadays suffer from the impact (i) of life cycles associated with technological innovations (Gill, 2002); (ii) of the globalization of the economy and culture; (iii) of the educational needs of an increasingly knowledge-driven society; and (iv) of the training needs for high-performing professional activities (Bruckmann & Carvalho, 2014; Duderstadt, 2001). Solutions to these factors - which constitute major reasons for a change in universities around the world - may be found in a positive attitude toward knowledge sharing and collaboration relationships.

Knowledge sharing is needed to integrate the different disciplines, ideas, and knowledge of the institution’ members (Nissen, Evald, & Clarke, 2014). On the other hand, collaboration refers to the relationship and high level of knowledge sharing between team members (Nissen et al., 2014), and is the creation base for new knowledge (Tan, 2016). Collaboration has been considered a way to address the challenges of the 21st century, fostering the necessary innovation, growth, and productivity for all parties involved. Several studies reveal that collaboration can be strongly influenced by knowledge sharing.

Like in the business sector, universities should encourage and promote internal and external collaboration. Collaboration relationships, besides the creation of new knowledge, may result in several outcomes and benefits for the university and society.

This chapter aims to address and discuss the university challenges in the collaboration relationships with the industry based on the main results of some empirical studies developed during a research project.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Knowledge Sharing: Sharing and transfer are interchangeable in the literature, and commonly appear with the same sense. It is a key process related to the knowledge intensive context. Knowledge sharing promotes the creation of new theories and ideas, and establishment of new research principles.

Academia: A community constituted by universities and public research institutes or laboratories. The academia offers teaching, research, and service to the community in various areas of knowledge.

Motivation: Internal and external factors that stimulate to attain a goal.

Informal Collaboration: Mechanism that does not involve any contractual relationship between the university and the industry.

University-Industry Collaboration: Bi-directional relationship between university and industry entities, established to enable the diffusion of creativity, ideas, skills and people with the aim of creating mutual value over time.

Channel of Interaction: Mechanisms of interaction existent between the partners of a relationship.

Governance: The establishment of policies, best practice, and continuous monitoring of their proper implementation to ensuring effectiveness.

Outcome: Consequence or conclusion after a period of time, which can be one result, multiple results, or no results.

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