Strategies for Turning Ideas into Business at Universities

Natasha Ramkissoon-Babwah, Arnold Babwah


Universities are well known for undertaking research projects in various sectors and making technological breakthroughs but few universities have focused on actually turning ideas into businesses. More and more universities are beginning to realize that it is no longer adequate to simply produce graduates and doctoral theses.

They must play a greater role in generating wealth for their country and contributing to society by ensuring that promising inventions and other creative ideas do not get lost but be developed into marketable products and services. As a result, there is currently a growing trend whereby universities are taking steps to become more entrepreneurial by encouraging students and staff to generate creative ideas and commercialize their ideas.

This paper examines the programmes of Universities at the International Level that have been promoting entrepreneurship development and recommends intervention areas to increase the capacity of a University to derive the benefits from an active business commercialization process. The key recommendations include the development of an entrepreneurial vision for the University, cultivating partnerships with private and public sector organizations and   creating linkages that will promote mentorship and funding opportunities. 

Keywords: Entrepreneurial University, Business Commercialization, Innovation, Triple Helix Model

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