What is it?
The European Commission supports links between university and business at the European level through a series of initiatives. Closer links between business and higher education can:
- encourage the transfer and sharing of knowledge,
- create long-term partnerships and opportunities,
- drive innovation, entrepreneurship and creativity.
Closer cooperation with business helps universities develop curricula that are relevant and meet the needs of students and society. This helps give graduates the right skills and mind-sets for the jobs market.
There are many examples of successful cooperation between academia and industry(3.25 Mb)
in Europe. However, the level of co-operation varies considerably between different countries, universities and academic disciplines.
How does the EU support this?
The University-Business Forum
The University-Business forum, held almost every year since 2008, brings together:
- higher education institutions,
- business associations,
- intermediaries, and
- public authorities.
It gives them a chance to meet at European level to discuss, network and exchange ideas and good practice. The Forum looks at the current situation in university-business cooperation and at what policy initiatives and programmes are needed to support this. The next European Forum will take place in Spring 2017.
Thematic Forums are also held in cooperation with Member States to address key topics at national and regional level. Forums have taken place over the last year in Stockholm(5.91 Mb)
, Madrid(3.01 Mb), Rome(4.57 Mb) and Berlin(10.61 Mb)
. The next forum is planned in Lithuania on 24-25 September 2015.
Two major initiatives which have come out of the University-Business Forum discussions are HeInnovate, a self-assessment tool for Higher Education and the Knowledge Alliances.
HEInnovate is a self-assessment tool designed to provide Higher Education Institutions with advice, ideas, and inspiration to manage institutional and cultural change.
HEInnovate allows organisations to carry out their own, independent self-assessment of their institution, faculty, department or sector by using a series of statements covering a number of areas such as leadership, governance and entrepreneurship.
Knowledge Alliances are EU-funded partnerships between higher education institutions and companies. Together they work on projects to promote creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship by developing new approaches to teaching and learning.
The aim is:
- to create new multi-disciplinary curricula,
- to promote transferable skills and entrepreneurship within and through education,
- to encourage a more systemic culture of cooperation between business and academia.
6th University-Business Forum(19.02 Mb)
5th University-Business Forum(9.74 Mb)
Innovation in higher education(6.16 Mb)
Measuring the Impact of university-business cooperation
Examples of successful cooperation between academia and industry(3.25 Mb)
Review of the state of university-business cooperation in Europe(3.22 Mb)
Individual reports on the state of University-Business Cooperation (2013) are available for the following countries: