Regional Innovation Impact of Universities in Europe

  • 18 Jun 2021
  • Online event

The event will bring together national and regional policymakers, higher education institutions and international experts interested in exploring how universities can increase their regional engagement and impact using the Regional Innovation Assessment Framework.  

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Programme

18th June

  1. 13:00-13:15
    Welcome
    • Mikel Landabaso | Director, Joint Research Centre 
    • Antoaneta Angelova-Krasteva | Director, DG Education, Youth, Sports and Culture
    • Peter Berkowitz | Head of Unit, DG Regional and Urban Policy
  2. 13:15-14:00
    Introducing “Regional Innovation impact of Universities”

    Chair: Dominique Foray, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale Lausanne

    • The Regional Innovation Impact Assessment (RIIA) Framework | Robert Tijssen, Leiden University
    • Testing the framework on universities in Europe: lessons learned | John Edwards, CICS.NOVA
    • Advancing the framework and scope for implementation | Koen Jonkers, Joint Research Centre

    Questions and open discussion with participants

  3. 14:00-15:00
    Panel discussion about the relevance and applicability of the RIIA framework

    Chair: Fernando Hervás, Deputy Head of Unit, Joint Research Centre

    • Per Michael Johansen, Rector Aalborg University, Denmark
    • Maria Jose Figueras Salvat, Rector Rovira I Virgil University, Spain
    • Beata Lubos, Director department for Innovation at Ministry of Economy, Labour and Technology, Poland
    • Francesc Grau, Secretary for universities, Catalan government
    • Stephane Berghmans, Director for Research & Innovation, European University Association
    • John Goddard, Emeritus Professor of Regional Development Studies at Newcastle University
  4. 15:00 - 15:10
    Closure

    Fernando Hervás, Deputy Head of Unit, Joint Research Centre

Practical Information

When
18 Jun 2021
Where

Online event

Registration Information

Registrations are now open

Register

Description

Many universities in Europe make major contributions to their home towns, metropolitan areas and regions. But how important are they exactly? What is their actual socio-economic impact on the local environment and communities? How active are they in terms of collaborating with business enterprises and contributing to regional innovation systems? Can universities expand or intensify those connections and interactions? How can we incentivise them to do more? These are all highly relevant questions in this current day and age, where universities are often seen as core contributors to educated societies and resilient economies, yet nobody seems to have any convincing answers.

The event will bring together national and regional policymakers, higher education institutions and international experts interested in exploring how universities can increase their regional engagement and impact using the Regional Innovation Assessment Framework.

Background

Many universities in Europe make major contributions to their home towns, metropolitan areas and regions. But how important are they exactly? What is their actual socio-economic impact on the local environment and communities? How active are they in terms of collaborating with business enterprises and contributing to regional innovation systems? Can universities expand or intensify those connections and interactions? How can we incentivise them to do more?

The European Commission has been supporting different initiatives to understand the multiple ways in which higher education can contribute to their local surroundings and region. This includes understanding their role in Smart Specialisation Strategies, developing frameworks to assess higher education impact in their regions, and boosting their innovation and entrepreneurial capacity through a new EIT initiative. The 2021-2027 financial framework will provide new opportunities for higher education contributions to skills for Smart Specialisation Strategies, industrial transitions and entrepreneurship with the use of European Regional Development Fund and Cohesion Funds.
Driven by European Union (EU) policy challenges, the event centre its attention on one specific feature of their impact profile: their ‘regional innovation impact’ (RII). How do universities engage with, and directly contribute to, ‘regional innovation systems’ from an RII viewpoint? The recently published book “Regional Innovation Impact of Universities”, focuses on one specific feature of the impact profile of universities: their ‘regional innovation impact’. The book further elaborates a previously introduced Regional Innovation Impact Assessment Framework, building on a series of pilot studies of the framework, by some 20 universities across Europe, to explore its potential application by both universities and policymakers. 

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