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HEInnovate: A Self-Assessment Tool for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

What is it about?

HEInnovate is an online self-assessment tool designed to provide Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) with advice, ideas, and inspiration for the effective management of institutional and cultural change.

First discussed at the March 2011 University-Business Forum, the concept of HEInnovate arose from the need to identify the defining concepts and characteristics of an entrepreneurial HEI and create a "Guiding Framework" that would be freely available as a tool for learning and inspiration.

How does it work?

HEInnovate allows individual HEI's to carry out their own, independent self-assessment of their institution, faculty/department/sector, via the website, by using a series of statements covering a number of areas key to the performance and development of an entrepreneurial and innovative HEI.

The self-assessment is divided into seven areas or dimensions:

  • Leadership and Governance;
  • Organisational Capacity, People & Incentives;
  • Entrepreneurship Development in Teaching & Learning;
  • Pathways for Entrepreneurs;
  • HEI – Business/External Relationships for Knowledge Exchange;
  • The Entrepreneurial HEI as an International Institution;
  • Measuring the Impact.

Each dimension consists of a series of statements that the user rates according to how much they agree or disagree. Not all seven dimensions need to be completed in order to generate results; users may choose those most relevant to them.

Once the self-assessment is completed the tool provides instant feedback on the areas of strength and weakness in your HEI and customised learning materials are generated based on your results.

What has been achieved so far?

A series of workshops on HEInnovate have been held across the EU countries; there has also been interest in the tool from outside Europe. The increasing and continuous demand for events and workshops has led to a very complete programme of activities including several in cooperation with the EU presidencies.

Over 450 separate institutions had used HEInnovate by July 2014, with the number continuing to grow.

As part of the cooperation agreement with the OECD, national policy seminars and in depth national policy reviews are also being held in a number of EU countries.

What are the next steps?

On 18th November 2014, one year to the day since its launch, a new, updated version of HEInnovate was released with improved functionalities, new content and the HEInnovate Challenge; an opportunity for HEIs to submit their own stories and experiences based on the seven dimensions.

More workshops and events are planned for 2015 as well as OECD country reviews and the release of a "Training Kit" that will allow HEIs to hold their own events. We continue to update and improve the tool based on user feedback and input.

HEInnovate is also a growing online Community, connecting through other platforms and social media such as LinkedIn.

 

How can we help?