Should Universities Lead Innovation?

I have been commissioned by University World News to write a piece on the recent review by Sir Andrew Witty (Chief Exec of pharma giant GlaxoSmithKline and Chancellor of the University of Notitngham) on Encouraging a British Invention Revolution.  Witty’s review outlines how he sees the future of innovation in the UK and, critically, places universities at the forefront of wealth creation and economic growth.  I have included a short extract below of the full article which can be found here.

Witty’s report paints the UK as a country that hosts world-leading research expertise within its universities, but which often fails to translate that expertise into economic growth. He is critical of a system he sees as too focused on local growth, leading to duplicated initiatives and a muddled national approach.

Furthermore, he sees universities as being underutilised in developing economic strategies and describes how the opaque research landscape hinders engagement by small and medium-sized enterprises, or SMEs, charities, LEPs and overseas partners.

Not everything is bad – through a number of case studies, Witty highlights existing good practices and his recommendations outline how they can be turned into a national strategy for innovation and economic growth.

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