Towards the Third Generation University

Towards the Third Generation University

Managing the University in Transition

J. G. Wissema

Universities are undergoing massive change, evolving from science-based, government-funded institutions into ‘international know-how hubs’ dubbed third generation universities, or 3GUs. J.G. Wissema explores this dramatic change, tracing the historic development of universities, and exploring the technology-based enterprises, technostarters and financiers for start-ups and young enterprises that are the main partners of these 3GUs. He goes on to illustrate that universities play a new role as incubators of new science or technology based commercial activities and take an active role in the exploitation of the knowledge they create. The book concludes with suggestions regarding the way in which changes in the university’s mission should be reflected in subsequent organisational changes.

Chapter 8: The Know-How Commercialisation Function

J. G. Wissema

Subjects: business and management, management and universities, organisation studies, education, management and universities


8.1 THE MARKET OF KNOW-HOW COMMERCIALISATION Before we can design the structure of the marketing department of the third generation university (3GU), we need to know which customer categories are being served. A university basically has three kinds of customers who can at the same time be its partners: 1. Large technology-based enterprises. In Chapter 4, we saw that many such enterprises, whether in traditional branches of industry or in information technology (IT) or life sciences, discontinued their pure scientific research while they still needed these activities to support their exploratory research. They are therefore interested in sharing pure scientific research with universities or farming them out altogether.148 Large enterprises are much less interested in cooperation concerning product and process development as they can carry out these activities themselves better and faster. Production firms. Companies that are not involved in fundamental change have no need for basic research and exploratory research or pure science. Their innovation efforts focus on product and process development while they may need applied research occasionally. Young knowledge-based firms, either technostarters or young enterprises. Research is their raison d’être. They often stem from a pure science project and they need applied research as well as development activities. If they are successful and if they stay independent, they become large technology-based enterprises. 2. 3. The needs of the university’s clients and/or partners are depicted in Figure 8.1 (adapted from Figure 4.1). Let us now look at the market from the perspective of the...

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